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M 1^1 



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HUNTKB, BOSK A Ck) , ' 
PRINTEB8 AND BINDBKS, 
TORONTO. 



From JL IIIDIDvlllpIt tiy B« 



ALEX. M?LAeHLAM. 



POEMS 


AND 

BY 


SONGS. 


ALEXANDER MoLAOHLAN. • 




TORONTO 




ROSE PUBLISHING 


COMPANY. 




1888. 





Entered a43Cordiiig to the Act ef the Par- 
linment of Canada, m ihe year one thousand 
el^t hundred and eighty-eight, by Hunter, 
Rose A Oo^ in^the oflBce-oi the Minister of 
Agriculture. 









i^^^8 




i 

."40 
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46 
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."91 

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, CON 

MISCELL 

God 


T 

ANE 

12 
13 
14 
16 
17 
18 
19 
20 
22 
23 
24 
27 
30 

34 
35 

38 

TH 

83 
85 

89 


ENTS. 

OUS POEMS. 
Up and be a Hero 




Wilaon'B Giave 

Napoleon on St. Helena .... 

Martha 

Change 

The Wise Woman 

Traditions 




May , 

Britannia 

Ah,Me! 

MyBtery 




The Anglo-Saxon 

Where'er we may wander ... 

A Song of Charity 

OathoHc Mother md Child . 

Awful Spirit 

To ft Tiolet 

Stars 

If you would be Master .... 
0, spread the glad Tidings . 

E DOMINION. 

The Gipsy Blood 

The Settler's Sabbath Day . 

A Backwoods Hero. 

Sparking 


Song 

Man 

The Song of the Sun 

Ideal 

Wonian 

We live in arickottyHouEB.. 




IDYLS OF 
Elora 


! Come to the Greenwood 
Shade 




PAOB 

Neighbour John 102 

Fire in the Woods ; or the 

Old Settler's Story 104 

Th6 Man who rose from no- 
thing 108 

The Pines.. .f 109 

The Backwoods Philosopher.. Ill 
Old Canada ; or, Gee Buck, 

Gee 11,4 

Companions in Solitude ; or 

Reminiscences of the Bush. 116 
Young Canada ; or, Jack's as 

good's his Master 116 

The Old Settler's Address to 

his old Log-house 120 

The Maple and the Thistle ; 

or, Roderick of the Hammer 123 

ThePic-Nic 125 

To a Humming Bird 129 

" Wee Davie Lowe " 131 



* PAGB 

Spring 133 

Groiug to the Bush 136 

Oldfioss 138 

Young Hoss 141 

The Death of the Ox 144 

October 148 

Lidian Summer 151 

Hurrah for the New Domi- 
nion 164 

Acres of your own 155 

Whip-Poor-WiU 156 

Ontario 157 

The Maple Tree 169 

Autumn Leaves 160 

Bobolink 161 

To an Indian's Skull 162 

Grandmother's Story to her 
Grand - children ; or, the 
Evil Eye 166 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



PAQB 

Hallowe'en 171 

Cartha again 176 

Scotland re-visited ; or, the 

. Wanderer's Return 177 

Paisley Abbey 180 

Lord Lindsay's Return 184 

Scotland 186 

The Sempill Lords 188 

Mwy White 190 

I winna gae hame 192 

.The Wee' Laddie's Summer 
Day 195 



PAOV 

The Death of Evan Dhu 198 

Love 201 

The Lang Heided Laddie 202 

Hugh Macdonald 204 

Sighs in the City 208 

When George the Fourth was 

King 210 

The Age of Jollity 212 

OldAdam 214 

The Halls of Holyrood 218 

We're a' John Tamson's Bairns 220 
Longings in London 222 



MiSOELLAKEOXJS PoEMS. 




MlSCETJ.AT^EOUS POEMS. 




GOD. 

AIL, Thou great mysterious Being ! 
Thou the unseen, yet All-seeing, 

To Thee we call. 
How can a mortal sing Thy praise, 
Or speak of all Thy wondrous ways ? 

God over alJ. 

God of the great old solemn woods, 
God of the desert solitudes 

And trackless sea ; 
God of the crowded city vast, 
God of the present and the past. 

Can man know Thee ? 



God of the blue vault overhead. 

Of the green earth on which we tread, 

Of time and space ; 
God of the worlds which Time conceals, 
God of the worlds which Death reveals 

To all our race. 



B 



10 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



God of the glorious realms of thought, 
From which some simple hearts have caught 

A ray divine ; 
And the songs which rouse the nations, 
And the terrible orations, 

Lord Grod are Thine. 

And all the forms of beauty rare, 
Which toiling genius moulds with care, 

Yea, the sublime, 
The sculptured busts of joy and woe 
By Thee were fashioned long ago. 

In that far clime. 

Far above earth and space and time, 
Thou dweUest in Thy heights sublime. 

Beneath Thy feet 
The rolling worlds, the heavens are spread, 
Glory infinite^ound Thee shed. 

Where angels meet. 

From out Thy wrath the earthquakes leap. 
And shake the world's foundations deep. 

Till nature groans. 
In agony the mountains call, 
And ocean beUows throughout aU 

Her frightened zones. 

But where Thy smile its glory sheds. 
The lilies lift their lovely heads. 

And the primrose rare : 
And the daisy, deck'd with pearls 
Richer than the proudest earls 

On their mantles wear. 



- 



QOD. 



11 



These Thy preachers of the wild- wood, 
Keep they not the heart of childhood 

Fresh within ns still ? 
Spite of all our life's sad story, 
There are gleams of Thee and glory 

In the daffodil. 

And old Nature's heart rejoices. 
And the rivers lift their voices. 

And the sounding sea ; 
And the mountains, old and hoary. 
With their diadems of glory. 

Shout, Lord, to Thee ! 

r 

But though thou art high and holy. 
Thou dost love the poor and lowly. 

With a love divine. 
Love infinite ! love supernal, 
Love undying ! love eternal. 

Lord God are thine ! 



'^'^'\W\J'\J'' 



12 



MISCELLANEOUS FOEMS. 



GARIBALDI. 




SONS of Italy, awake, 

Your hearths and altars are at stake 

Arise, arise, for Freedom's sdke, 

And strike with Garibaldi ! 



The Liberator now appears. 
Foretold by prophets, bards, and seers. 
The hero sprung from blood and tears 
All hail to Garibaldi ! 

Let serfs and cowards fear apd quake 
Venice, Naples, Rome, awake ! 
Like lava of your burning lake. 
Rush on with Garibaldi I 

Up and avenge your country's shame ; 
Like JEtna belching forth her flame, 
Rush on in Freedom's holy name, 
And strike with Garibaldi! 

'Tis Freedom thunders in your ears : 
The weary night of blood and tears. 
The sorrows of a thousand years, 
Cr^ " On with Garibaldi ! " 

The Roman Eagle is not dead 
Her mighty wings again are spread 
To swoop upon the tyrant's head. 
And strike with Garibaldi ! 

The land wherein the laurel waves 
Was never meant to nourish slaves ; 
Then onward to your bloody graves. 
Or live like Garibaldi ! 



OLD HANNAH, 



13 



OLD HANNAH. 




|IS Sabbath mom, and a holy bahn 
Drops down on the heart like dew, 
And the sunbeams gleam 
Like a blessed dream 
Afar on the mountains blue. 
Old Hannah's by her cottage door, 
In her faded widow's cap ; 
^e is sitting alone 
On the old grey stone, 
With the BQ^le in her lap. 



An oak is hanging above her head, 
And the bum is wimpling by ; 

The primroses peep 

From their sylvan keep. 
And the lark is in the sky.* 
Beneath that shade her children played. 
But they're aU away with Death, 

And she sits alone 

On the old grey stone, 
To hear what the Spirit saith. 



Her years are o'er three score and ten, 

And her eyes are waxing dim. 

But the page is bright 

With a living light. 

And her heart leaps up to Him 
Who pours the mystic harmony 

Which the soul can only Jiear ! 

She is not alone 

On the old grey stone, 
Tho' no earthly friend is near. 



14 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



There's no one left to love her now ; 
But the eye that never sleeps 

Looks on her in love 

From the heavens above, 
And with quiet joy she weeps ; 
For she feels the balm of bUss is poured 
In her lone heart's deepest rut ; 

And the widow lone 

On the old grey stone, 
Has a peace the world knows not. 



THE RAIN IT FALLS. 




HE rain it falls, and the wind it blows, 
And the restless ocean ebbs and flows, 
But the why and the wherefore no one knows. 

The races come and the races go, 
But alas ! alas 1 what do they know ? 
They but repeat the old tale of woe. 

The years they com^ and they hurry on, 
Ah, just as they did in the days agone ! 
And bear us back to the yast unknown. 

We can't resist the decrees of Fate, 
And there's nothing for us but to wait 
'Till Death shall open or shut the gate. 

For the rain may fall, and the wind may blow. 

And the generations come and go, 

But the why and the wherefore none may know. 





MAY. 

SING and rejoice ! 
Give to giaaness a voice 

Shout a welcome to beautiful May ! 
Rejoice with the flowers, 
And the birds 'mong the bowers, 

And away to the green woods, away ! 
O, blithe as the fawn 
Let us dance in the dawn 

Of this life-giving, glorious day : 
Tis bright as the first 
Over Eden that burst — 

0, welcome, young joy-giving May ! 

The cataract's horn 

Has awakened the Morn, 
Her tresses are dripping with dew ; 

O, hush thee, and hark ! 

Tis her herald, the lark. 
That's singing afar in the blue. 

Its happy heart's rushing, 

In strains wildly gushing. 
That reach to the revelling earth. 

And sink through the deeps 

Of the soul, till«t leaps 
Into raptures far deeper than mirth. 



All nature's in keeping ! 
The live streams are leaping 
And laughing in gladness along ; 
The great hills are heaving, 



16 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 



The dark clouds are leaving, 
The valleys have burst into song. 

We'll range through the dells 

Of the bonnie blue bells, 
And sing with the streams on their way ; 

Well lie in the shades 

Of the flower-covered flades, 
And hear what the primroses say. 



0, crown me with flowers 

'Neath the green spreading bowers, 
With the gems and the jewels May brings; 

In the light of her eyes 
. And the depth of her dyes. 
We'll smile at the purple of kings. 

We'll throw off^ our years 

With their sorrows and tears. 
And time will not number the hours 

We'll spend in the woods, 

Where no sorrow intrudes, 
With the streams and the birds and the flowers. 



• 



BRITANNIA. 



17 



BRITANNIA. 




LL hail, my country ! hail to thee, 
Thou birthplace of the brave and free 
Thou ruler upon land and sea, 

Britannia ! 



No thing of change, no mushroom state 
In wisdom thou canst work and wait, 
Or wield the thunderbolts of Fate, 

Britannia ! 

< 

Oh, nobly hast thou played thy part! 
What struggles of the head and heart 
Have gone to make thee what thou art, 

r Britannia ! 

Great mother of the mighty dead ! 
Sir Walter sang and Nelson bled 
To weave a garland for thy head, 

Britannia ! 

And Watt, the great magician, wrought. 
And Shakspeare ranged the realms of thought. 
And Newton soared, alhd Cromwell fought, 

Britannia ! 



And Milton's high seraphic art. 
And Bacon's head and Bums' heart 
Are glories that shall ne'er depart, 

Britannia ! 



18 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



These are the soul of thy renown, 
The gems immortal in thy crown, 
The suns that never shall go down, 

Britannia ! 

O, still have faith in truth divine ! 
Aye sacred be thy seal and sign. 
And power and glory shall be thine, 

Britannia ! 



AH, ME! 




seek jbhe shore and learn the lore 
Of the great old mystic sea. 
And with listening ear you'll surely hear 
The great waves sigh, " Ah, me T 



There's ^ Harper good in the great old wood. 

And a mighty ode sings he ; 
To his harp he sings with its thousand strings. 

And the burden is, " Ah, me !" 

A glorious sight are the orbs of light 

In Heaven's wide azure sea ; 
Yet to our cry they but reply. 

With a long deep sigh, " Ah, me !" 



And Death and Time, on their march sublime. 

They will not questioned be ; 
And the hosts they bore to the dreamless shore 

Return no more. Ah, me 1 



MYSTERY. 



19 



MYSTERY. 




YSTERY ! Mystery ! 
All is a mystery ! 
Mountain and valley, and woodland and stream ; 
Man's troubled history, 
Man's mortal destiny, 
Are but a phase of the soul's troubled dream. 



Mystery ! Mystery ! 
All is a mystery ! 
Heart throbs of anguish and joy's gentle dew 
Fall from a fountain 
Beyond the great mountain 

Whose summits for ever are lost in the blue. 

* 

Mystery ! Mystery ! 

AU is a mystery ! 
The sigh of the night winds, the song of the waves, 

The visions that borrow 

Their brightness from sorrow, 
The tales which flowers teU us, the voices of graves. 



Mystery ! Mystery ! 

All is a mystery ! 
Ah ! there is nothing we wholly see through ! 

We are all weary, 

The night's long and dreary — 
Without hope of morning, O, what would we do ? 



20 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 




WHO KNOWS? 

.HE night was dark and the winds were out, 
And the stars hid in the sky, 
And the mousing owl too-hoo'd aloud 

At the wan moon rushing by ; 
And there I sat in my lonely room, 

With the children all asleep ; 
Ah ! there they lay in their dreams at play, 
While I sat with my sorrows deep. 

I pondered long on this weary life, 

And I cried " Are we what we seem ; 
Or sail we here in a phantom ship, 

In search of a vanisl^ed dream ? 
From deep to deep, from doubt to doubt, 

While the night still deeper grows ; 
Who knows the meaning of this life ?" 

When a voice replied, " Ifflio Knows ?" 

*' Shall it always be a mystery ? 
Are there none to lift the veil ?- 
Knows no one aught of the land we left. 

Or the port to which we sail ? 
Poor shipwrecked mariners, driven about 

By every wind that blows : 
Is there a haven of rest at all ?" 
And the voice replied, " WJio Knows T 

O, why have we longings infinite. 

And afiections deep and high. 
And glorious dreams of immortal things. 

If they are but born to die ? 
Are they but will-o'-wisps, that gleam 

Where the deadly night-shade grows ; 
Do they end in dust and ashes all T 

And the voice still cried, " FAo Kn/ows T 




And its hopeless tones fell on my heart 

Like a dark and heavy cloud, 
While the great horn'd moon looked down on me 

In terror from its shroud. » 

And it plainly said, " Ye are orphans all ; 

Is there no balm for your woes T 
While the screech-owl cried and the night wind sighed, 

Alas ! alas ! " Who Knows f 

I prayed for light through that weary night, 

And I questioned saint and seer ; 
But the demon Doubt put all to rout, 

And kept ringing in mine ear 
" Your life's a trance and a spectral dance, 

And round and round ye go ; 
Ye are poor ghosts all at a spectral ball, 

And that is the most ye know. 

" Ye dance and sing in your spectral ring, 

Tho' affrighted Nature raves 
Tho' the screec]i-owls cry and the night winds sigh, 

And 'the dead turn in their graves. 
Ye come like thought, and ye pass to nought. 

And what is. surprising most, 
'Mid your ghostly fun there is hardly one 

That believes himself a ghost. 

" 0, thought is sad, it would make you mad ; 
It is folly to weep and rave ; 
So follow Mirth around the earth. 

For there's nought beyond the grave. 
Your hearts would sink if ye dared to think, 
So ye dance with Death at the ball ; 
' And round ye go till the cock shall crow. 
And that is the end of aU." 



22 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 




WE'RE ALL AFLOAT. 

E'BE all afloat in a leaky boat, 
On Time's tempestuous sea; 
Death at the helni steers for his realm, 

And a motley crew are we. 
Through waters wide on every side, 

Away to the sunken shoals. 
He steers us o'er to the Passion's roar. 
And the heave of living souls. 

We hear the splash and the heavy dash, 

And the weary, weary moan, 
.And only know we embarked in woe, 

And are bound for the great unknown : 
Some telling tales of happy vales 

That lie beyond the gloom. 
While Greed and Spite are at their fighfc 

For another inch of room. 

And Fraud and Pride how they push aside 

The weak ones and the old, 
While curses deep from the mad hearts leap 

That they've huddled in the hold. 
'Tis sad to hear, 'mid the tempest drear. 

How the selfish crew go on ; 
How they corse and swear and snarl there, 

As dogs do o'er a bone. 

Anon, as a brief but sweet relief. 

In the midst of the fighting throng. 
Some poor waif starts to cheer our hearts 

With the blessed voice of song ; 
He sings of Peace and the heart's increase • 

When Love o'er the crew shall reign ; 
And the rudest hear with a willing ear, 

And each heart cries out " Amen." 




SONG. 



<>ii 




*M sad, my love — oh sing ! oh sing ! 
And remove this heavy pall, 
For Song is the only sacred thing 
That is left us liince the fall. » 

Ah ! yes, 'tis the very breath of life, ' 

And the light of all our day ; 
It stirs the soul like the Spartan fife, 

And charms the fiends away. 

For oh ! ere the voice of song was heard 

The world was all ajar. 
But the pitying Heavens sent the bard, 

And confusion fled afar. 

And while Desolation grimly sat, 
And mumbled the mouldering bones. 

At her feet sprang trees all dropping fat. 
And a soul in the very stones. 

And the wild beasts of the forest came 
And lowed in the peaceful dell. 

And the herds of savage men grew tame, 
Entranced by her magic spell. 

And the Mountains sang '* Rejoice ! rejoice !" 

To the forests of the dell, 
And awful Ocean heaved her voice 

In the mighty choral swell. 

And Echo heard in her cave confined. 
And she would the strain prolong, 

Till universal Nature joined 
In the swelling sea of song. 

I'm sad, my love— oh sing ! oh sing ! 

And remove this heavy pall. 
For Song is the only magic thing 

That is left us since the fall. 



1^4 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



MAN. 




OEIE forth, ye wise ones — ^ye who can 
Decipher Nature's mystic plan — 
Come sound me but the depths of man. 

What am I, and whence have I come ? 
No answer, save a dreary hum — 
Oh! why, ye wise ones, are ye dumb ? 

What is this house in which I dwell ? 
Alas ! alas ! there's none can tell ; 
O, Nature keeps her secret well ! 

And all I hear, and touch, and see, 
Time, and creation, are to me 
A marvel and a mystery ! 

Great Ruler of the earth and sky \ 
O, from my spirit's depths I cry, 
Almighty Father, " What am I ? " 

And what is all this world I see ? 
Is it what it appears to be. 
An awful, stern reality i 

And are these men that come and go, 
Or but the shades of Joy and Woe, 
All flitting through this vale below ? 

And what is Time, with all her cares. 
Her wrinkles, furrows, and grey hairs. 
The hag that swallows all she bears ; 



MAN. 



25 



The mystic where, the when and how, 

The awful, everlasting now, 

The funeral wreath upon my brow ? 

And for what purpose am I here, 
A stranger in an unknown sphere 
A thing of doubt, of hope and fear; 

A waif on time all tempest-tossed, 
A stranger on an unknown coast, 
A weary, wandVing, wondering ghost ? 

Did*st Thou not. Father, shape my course ? 

Or am I but a causeless force — 

A stream that issues from no source ? 

Ah, no ! within myself I see 
An endless realm of mystery 
A great, a vast infinity ! 

A house of flesh, a frail abode, 
Where dwell the demon and the god, 
A soaring seraph and a clod — 

The hall of the celestial Nine, 
The filthy stye of grovelling swine, 
The animal and the divine ; ' 



Ci'eation's puzzle ! false and true. 
The light and dark, the old and new. 
The slave, and yet the sovereign too. 

Angel and demon, Nero, Paul, 
And creeping things upon the wall, 
I am the brother of them all. 



2e 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 



A part of all things ! first and last, 
Linked to the future a;nd the past, 
At my own soul I glare aghast. 

A spark from the eternal caught, 
A living, loving thing of thought, 
A miracle in me is wrought ! 

A being that can never die, 

More wonderful than earth and sky, 

A terror to myself am L 

My spirit's sweep shall have no boimd, 
O, I shall sail the deep profound, 
A terror, with a glory crown'd ! 

And &om this dust and demon free. 
All glorified, these eyes shall see 
The All in All eternally. 



i 



THE SONG OF THE' SUN, 



27 



THE SONG OF THE SUN. 




HOXL sing the song of the starry throng, 
The song of the Sun and Sky ? 
The angels bright on their thrones of light. 

Not a mortal such as I. 
How vast, how deep, how infinite ! 

Are the wonders spread abroad 
On the outward walls of the azure halls 
Of the ciijy of our God. 



Men seldom look on the marvellous book 

Which God writes on the sky, 
But they cry for food as the only good, 

Like the beasts which eat and die. 
Awake ! and gaze on the glorious maze ! 

For every day and night, 
God paints on air those pictures rare, 

To thrill us with delight. 

O, come with me ! 0, let us flee 

Across the dewy lawn, 
And see unrolled in realms of gold 

The glories of the dawn. 
Behold she streaks the mountain peaks 

With the faintest tinge of gray. 
But the glory hies, and the mists arise, 

And the shadows flee away. 



The stars rush back from the cohqueror*s track, 
And the night away is driven, 



28 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 



While the King of Day mounts on his way 
Through the golden gates of Heaven, 

And his heralds fly athwart the sky 
With a lovely rainbow hue, 

Or hang around the deeps profound ! 
The unfathomed gulfs of blue. 



The great vault reels 'neath his chariot wheels, 

And the thunder-clouds are riveii, 
'Til they expire in crimson fire 

On the burning floor of Heaven. 
And then, O then ! every hill and glen. 

Every peak and mountain old, 
With a diadem of glory swims 

In a living sea of gold. 



With his gorgeous train, through the blue domain 

He rushes on and on, 
'Til with a round of glory crowned 

He mounts his noonday throne. 
Then his burning beams with their golden gleams. 

He scatters in showers -abroad. 
Til we cannot gaze on the glorious blaze 

Of the garments of the god. 



Then from his throne, with an azure zone, 

The conqueror descends. 

And in robes of white, through realms of light, 

His downward course he bends. 
« 

'Mid great white domes, like the happy homes 

Of the ransomed souls at rest, 
Whose work is done, whose crowns are won, 

And they dwell among the blest. 



^ THE SONG OF THE SUN. 29 

How calm, how still, how beautiful ! 

The very soul of peace 
Seems breathing there her secret prayer 

That strife and sin may cease. 
Then in the west he sinks to rest 

Far down in his ocean bed ; 
And he disappears, amid evening's tears, 

With a halo on his head. 



But I cannot write of the marvellous sight 

At his setting last I saw ; 
I can only feel, I can only kneel, * 

With a trembling fearing and awe. 
Who'll sing the song of the starry throng, 

The song of the Sun and Sky ? 
The angels bright on their thrones of light, 

Not a mortal such as I. 



30 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



IDEAL. 



<2it 




'M lord of a realm ideal, 
And I love to steal away 
From all the things which fret us here 

In this weary hoase of clay. 
When ajl my sins and follies 

In judgment 'gainst me rise, 
And I dare not seek a refuge 

In the common 6ourt of lies. 
When Fm weary of all this world, 

When the woe will not depart, 
I flee to the living streams that sing 

Through those regions of the heart. 



When I hear some ancient ballad, 

Some old-world weary air. 
On the wings of that old melody, 

In a moment I am there. 
Away in the realms transcendent, 

Where all lovely forms have birth. 
And the glorious things we see in dreams. 

But never can find on earth. 
Where the flowers are always blooming. 

And the streams are never dry, 
Where friendship knows no blighting. 

And our dfear ones never die. 



Where hope keeps all her promises. 
And there's no one sighs " Ah me," 

O'er glorious things which might have been. 
But were destined not to be. 



IDEAL. 



31 



Where worth is always welcome, 

Where no Homer begs his bread, 
Where no Kossuth is in exile, 

With a price upon his head. 
Where no son of song or of science, 

Is scorned by the fools he'd save ; 
Where no great heart, in its misery. 

Creeps into a nameless grave. 

And there I meet with the humble souls. 

That on earth bore a heavy load ; 
Yet soared sublime o'er the woes of time. 

By implicit faith Id God. 
I meet with the mighty spuits 

Who righted humanity's wrongs, 
And the Hebrew bards and prophets. 

Who sung the inmiortal songs. 
I talk with the orators of old. 

And, in listening to their tones, 
I feel how they thrilled the souls of men, 

And rouseci up the very stones. 



With the old world's hoary sages, 

I have converse deep and high, 
While we drink the immortal nectar, 

From founts that are never dry. 
And we pledge the young immortals 

Of every creed and clime, 
Who toil below, amid want and woe, 

To hasten earth's happy time. 
And we sing the Songs supernal. 

And we shout for joy. to see 
Things not as we find them here on earth. 

But things as they ought to be. 



32 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 



WOMAN. 




HEN my gloomy hour comes on me, 
And I shun the face of man, 
Finding bitterness in aU things, 
As vex'd spirits only can : 



When of all the world I'm weary, 
Then some gentle woman's face, 

Coming like a blessed vision. 
Reconciles me to our, race. 

All the children of affliction, 
All the weary and oppressed. 

Flee to thee, beloved woman, 
Finding shelter in thy breast. 

While we follow mad ambition, 
Thine is far the nobler part ; 

Nursing flowers of sweet afiection 
In the valleys of the heart. 

Man can look and laugh at danger. 
Mighty with the sword is he ; 

But he cannot love, and sufier. 
Pity, and forgive, like thee. 



Blessed ministers of mercy ! 

Hov'ring round the dying bed, 
Come to cheer the broken-hearted. 

To support the drooping head. 



WOMAN. 



33 



Oh, my blessings be upon you, 
For, beneath yon weary sky, 

Ye are ever bringing comfort 
Unto sinners such as I. 



When the saints have but upbraidings 
For the guilty, erring man, 

Ye speak words of hope and mercy, 
As dear woman only can. 

When my we^ry journey's ending ; 

When my troubled spirit flies, 
May a woman smooth my pillow. 

May a woman close my eyes. 



'■.^"> -.^•K, N.'^^^' .-V" 



^- N.>- >. 



34 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



WE LIVE IN A RICKETY HOUSK 




E live in a rickety house, 
In a dirty dismal street, 
Where the naked hide from day, 
And thieves and drunkards meet. 

And pious folks, with their tracts, 
"When our dens they enter in, 

They point to our shirtless backs, 
As the fruits of beer and gin. 

And they quote us texts, to prove 
That our hearts are hard as stpne ; 

And they feed us with the tact, 
That the fault is all our own. 

And the parson comes and prays — 
He's very concerned 'bout our souls ; 

But he never asks, in the coldest days, 
How we may be off for coals, 

It will be long ere the poor 
Will learn their grog to shun ; 

While it's raiment, food and fire, « 
And religion all in one. 

I wonder some pious folks 

Can look us straight in the face. 

For our ignorance and crime 

Are the Church's shame and disgrace. 

We live in a rickety house, 

In a dirty dismal street, 
Where the naked hide from day, 

Ahd thieves and drunkards meet. 



BA VID, KING OF ISRAEL, 



35 



DAVID, KING OF ISRAEL. 



^OME and look upon this picture, 
ThoughtfiiUy those features scan, 
There he sits, the bard of Scripture, 
Not an angel, but a man. 

In his hand, the harp that often 

Thrilled the. shepherd in the glen, 
And has now supreme dominion 
O'er the hearts and souls of men. 

That same harp which charmed the^ demon 

In the darkened soul of Saul ; 
And has soothed the troubled spirit 

In the bosoms of us all. 

Human nature's strength and weakness, 
Hope and heart-break, smiles and sighs ; 

What a world of joy and sorrows 
Mirrored in those deep blue eyes. 

Tis a face that, somehow, tells us 

God has made us all the same. 
Of one -blood, and heart and nature. 

Differing but in creed and name. 

ALL that has been done or suffered, 
All that has been thought or said, 

Israel's strength, and Israel's weakness, 
Summed up in that lordly head. 

Yet, curtail'd, hemm'd in and hamper'd, 

He could only utter part 
Of the great infinite message. 

That was lying on his heart. 



36 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 



'Tis a face supremely human, 

Brother to us, every one, 
For he oft has sinned and sorrowed, 

Just as you and I have done. 

Yes, it tells a tale of struggle, 

Of a life-long weary fight, 
Wrestliug with foes all the day long, 

And with phantoms all the night. 

Fighting with infatuation ; 

Scorning the degrading chain ; 
Hating sin, yet rushing to it. 

Rising but to fall again. 

Always sinning and repenting. 

Promising to sin no more ; 
Now resisting, now consenting, 

Human to the very core. 

Now he deems himself forsaken, 
Feels that he*s a poor outcast; 

But tho' he should die despairing. 
He will struggle to the last. 

He has felt the soul's upbraiding ; 

Conscience oft has made him smart. 
Until pain, and shame, and sorrow 
Leapt in lyrics from his heart. 

From the depth of his affliction. 

To the Father he would cry, 
Who, in love and pity, raised him. 

Set him on a rock on high. 

Gave him gleams of worlds transcendent. 
Brighter than the rainbow's rim ; 

Touched his harpstrings with the raptures 
Of the soaring seraphim. 



DA riB, KING OF ISRAEL. 



37 



Like the mighty waters gushing, 

Is the torrent of his song ; 
Sweeping onward, roaring, rushing, 

Bearing human hearts along. ' 

Then anon, like gentle dew-drops. 
Falls that spirit — ^sweet, serene. 

Peaceful as the quiet waters. 
Fragrant as the glades of green. 

Then what living gusts of gladness 

Startle the enraptured ear. 
While a tone of human sadness 

Makes the sweetest strain more dear. 

Not the rapt and holy prophet, 
Not the pure in every part. 

But the sinning, sorrowing creature, 
Was the "Man of God's own heart." 

0, 'twas love surpassing tender. 

And God gave it as a sign, 
That the heart that is most human, 

Is the heart that's most divine. 



38 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS 



ROBERT BURNS. 

hT[1^T ^^^' ^ ^^^^' ^^g ^^ Scottish song, 
oi^/' With all thy faults we love thee, 
Nor would we set up modern saints 

For all their cant, above thee. 
There hangs a grandeur and a gloom 

Around thy wondrous story, 
As of the sun eclipsed at noon, 

^Mid all his beams of glory. 

A marvel, and a mystery ! 

A king set on a throne. 
To guide the people's steps aright. 

Yet cannot guide his own. 
A marvel, and a mystery ! 
• A strange, a wondrous birth ; 
Since Israel's king there has not been 

Thy likeness upon earth. 

For thou wert the ordained of Heaven, 

Thy mission's high and holy ; 
To thee, the noble work was given, 

To lift the poor and lowly. 
Thy words are living vocal things, 

Around the world they're ringing ; 
Hope's smiles, they bear, and everywhere 

Set weary hearts a singing. 



Untutor'd child of nature wild. 
Whose instinct's always true ; 

O, when I'm weary of the saints, 
I turn with joy to you. 



ROBERT BURNS, 39 



The bigot and the blockhead still 

Are at thy memory railing, 
Because thou wert a son of Eve, 

And had a human failing. 

/ 

A benefactor of our race, 

Yet on the face they strike thee ; 
And like the Pharisee of old. 

Thank God they are not like thee. 
Well, let them rave above thy grave, 

Thou canst not hear their railings : 
We take thee to our heart of hearts. 

With all thy faults and failings. 

For they were human at the worst 

True hearts can but deplore them \ 
The faults from which great virtues spring. 

O, throw a mantle o'er them ! 
And loving souls in every place, 

Still hail thee as a brother ; 
Like thee, thou glory of our race, 

Where shall we find another ? 



40 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 



UP AND BE A HERO. 

XtI^ my friend, be bold and true, 

There is noble work to do, 
Hear the voice which calls on you, 

" Up, and be a hero !" 

What, tho' fate has fixed thy lot. 

To the lowly russet cot ; 

Tho' thou art not worth a groat, 

Thou mayest be a hero ! 

High heroic deeds are done, 
Many a battle's lost or won. 
Without either sword or gun. 

Up,- and be a hero ! 

Not to gain £(< worldly height, 
Not for sensual delight. 
But for very love of right. 

Up, and be a hero ! 

Follow not the worldling's creed. 
Be an^honest man indeed, 
God will help thee in thy need. 

Only be a hero 1 



There is seed which must be sown, 
Mighty truths to be made known. 
Tyrannies to be o'erthrown, 

Up, and be a hero ! 



UF AND BE A HERO. 



41 



There are hatreds and suspicions, 
There are social inquisitions, 
Worse than ancient superstitions, 

Strike them like a hero ! 

In the mighty fields of thought, 
There are battles to be fought. 
Revolutions to be wrought, 

Up, and be a hero 1 

Bloodless battles to be gained, 
Spirits to be disenchained. 
Holy heights to be attained. 

Up, and be a hero 1 

To the noble soul alone. 
Nature's mystic art is shown, 
God will make His secrets known, 

Only to the hero ! 

If thou only art but true. 
What may not thy spirit do. 
All is possible to you. 

Only be a hero ! 



^ 



D 



42 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



INFINITE. 



PART I. 



JyI^^-^ the gates of eye and ear, 

Lo, what a wondrous world is here, 

Marvels on marvels still appear 

Infinite ! 

Great mother ! by whose breast we're fed, 

With thy green mantle round thee spread, 

The blue vault hanging o'er thy head, 

Infinite ! 

Why wert thou into being brought ? 

How were thy forms of beauty wrought ? 

Thou great upheaval of a thought. 

Infinite ! 

Which scooped the vales where dew distils, 

Which led the courses of the rills. 

And fixed the everlasting hills, 

Infinite ! 

Which called from darkness bright-eyed day, 

Baptized it with a heavenly ray, 

And sent it on its endless way, 

Infinite! 

Ye waves that lash the hoary steep, , 

Ye mighty winds with boundless sweep. 

Great coursers of the trackless deep, 

Infinite! 

And you, ye streamlets on your way, 

Tho' laughing all the summer's day. 

Ye only sing, ye only say 

Infinite 1 



INFINITE, 



43 



Sweet liimet singiDg on the lea, 
Wild lark in heaven's wide azure sea, 
The burden of your strain's to me, 



Infinite 



Loved violets 'neath my feet that lie, 
Sweet harebells, can you tell me why 
Tom- beauty only makes me sigh ? 



Infinite I 



Thou wild rose blooming on the tree, 
Ye daisies laughing on the lee, 
Sweet fioweru your message is to me, 

Infinite ! 

This dust's to spirit strangely wed, 
'Tis haunted ground on which we tread, 
The living, stranger than the dead, 

^ Infinite ! 

A presence fills the earth and air. 
Bends o'er us when we're not aware. 
And ej'es look on us everywhere, 



Infinite 



Earth, ocean, air, heaven's azure sea ! 
Oh, ye have always been to me 
A marvel and a mystery ! 



Infinite ! 



PART II. 




NBAR the gates of eye and ear, 
Lo ! what a mystic world is here. 
The heights of hope, the depths of fear. 

Infinite ! 

Ye wise ones, can ye tell me nought 

About this magic web of thought. 

Or of the loom on which 'tis wrought ? 

Infinite ! 



44 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



Ye str9;iige, ye sacred human ties^ 

A mighty marvel in you lies, 

A wondrous world of tears and sighs, 



Infinite ! 



This human love, so deep, so vast ; 
Ye sympathies which run so fast, 
And bind the future with the past. 



Infinite ! 



Ye magic cords, where were ye spun ? 

Ye strange affinities that run. 

And warp the mystic web in one,^ 

Infinite ! 

Love's sacred fires. Griefs burning tears. 
Faith's holy hope, and Doubles dark fears. 
Spring from a foilnt beyond the spheres. 

Infinite 1 

But, who the secret clue can find 
Of all the avenues which wind 
Up to thy throne, immortal mind ? 

Infinite 1 

In the soul's presence who are great ? 
The wisest ones can but translate 
Some passing look, some word of Fate, 

Infinite 1 

Who'll take the measure, or the bound ? 

No line of ours can ever sound 

The fathomless, the great profound. 

Infinite ! 

O, were I but from self set free ! 

The spirit then might speak through me. 

Of all this deep unfathomed sea. 

Infinite 1 



WILSON'S GTtAVE. 



45 




WILSON'S GRAVE. 

[ AxEXANBEB WiLSON, the Scottish Poet and American Omitholofi:ist, 
is buried in the Cemetery of the Swedish Church, Southwark. Phila- 
delphia. The Navy-yard refreshment-rooniis and a wharf are within a 
hundred yards of his grave. *' Had I been at home when he died/' 
said his friend George Ord, '* I would have selected some quiet spot 
in the country, retired from the city, where the birds would have 
warbled over his grave. Such a spot as he himself would have pre- 
ferred."] 

'HEY should not have buried thee here ! 
1 they should have made thee a bed, 
Where the flowers at thy feet would appear, 
And the birds would sing over thy head. 

! They should have laid thee to rest, 

From the smoke of the city, away 
Where the dew would fall bright on thy breast, 

And the green turf would cover thy clay. 

Afar in the forest's green shade, 

The tall pine above thee should wave, 
Where the " Blue-bird " would perch o'er thy head, 

And the " Whip-poor- Will " sit on thy grave. 

Where Spring would come forth with her smiles. 

And the birds that to thee were so dear ; 
And sing 'mong the green leafy aisles, 

The songs you delighted to hear. 

And the red man would marvel to meet 

A grave in the green forest shade ; 
And the hunter at evening would sit. 

And weep where thine ashes are laid. 

They should not have buried thee here, 
For the forest above thee should wave, 

But have borne thee away on thy bier. 

Where the birds would sing over thy grave. 




NAPOLEON ON ST. HELENA. 

jljQj^E stands alone on a desolate rock, 
j^L^J. ^ith the watery waste around him ; 
For the slaves of Fate and the hounds of Hate, 
To this lonely rock have bound him. 

No sail appears on the watery way, 

He sees but the sea-mew flying ; 
He hears but the wave, as it moans round this grave, 

And hope in his heart is dying. 

He has folded his arms upon his breast, 

His eye's on the sun descending. 
With dark clouds o'ercast, it is sinking at last, 
Like his glory in darkness ending. 

And he thinks of the Sun of Austerlitz, 

That rose, and that set in glory ;• 
And there gleams out a brief lonely joy 'mid his grief. 

For his name shall live in story. 

And over that brow that was so serene, 

Tho' the death shower was descending, 
A dark cloud has past, for like that sun at last, 
^ His glory is gloomily ending. 



The sword of Marengo must rust in its sheath, 
And that soul of ambition unbounded 

Must fret itself here, on this peak lone and drear : 
This rock with the ocean surrounded. 



NAPOLEON ON ST. HELENA. 



47 



And he mutters, '* Of kingdoms and crowns, 

A terrible fate has bereft me ; 
They have vanished like smoke, and to rule on this rock, 

Not even that boon has been left me. 

"Ah ! where are the voices that shouted so loud, 

In the day of mine exaltation ; 
I hear but the moan of old ocean alone, 

Round the rock of my desolation. 

" And where are the legions that leaped at my word ? 

In joy, 'mid the lightning and thunder, 
While thrones shook with dread, at the sound of my tread, 

And nations stood dumb in their wonder. . 

" Ah, Ney 1 is it thou, and Lannes and Desaix, 
With your legions, ye gather round me ? 

Ye have come o'er the waves from your lone bloody graves, 
To this rock where the sea-gods have bound me. 

" Let the bugles ring out ! let the eagles advance ! 

There shall be no rock, and no main ; . 
Leap into the saddle ! great hearts, ye are able 

To bear me to glory again ! 

" See, Murat has broken the red gleaming ranks, 

And Junot is swooping down after ; 
Ah, fool ! all my hosts turn to legions of ghosts, 

And fade amid fiendish laughter. 



"I founded my kingdom on force and fraud ; 

I built on a sandy foundation ; 
! the love-founded throne, that of Jesus alone, 

Shall smile at the waves of mutation." 



48 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



MARTHA. 



«- 




LN a sweet secluded nook, 



vDown b€;3ide the quiet brook, 
There an humble cabin's seen 
Peeping from the ivy green, 
While a great elm bends above it, 
As it really seemed to love it. 
There old Martha lives alone, 
But tho* to the world unknown, 
There's a heart so truly human 
In the breast of that old woman ! 
Oft I i^eek that quiet place, 
Just to look upon her f^ace. 
And forget this scene of care, 
Where men palter, curse and sweax; 
And the demons all are rife 
In the never-ending strife 
For the vanities of life. 



What a world of love there lies 
Mirrored in her deep blue eyes ! 
What a ray of quiet beauty 
They throw around each daily duty ! 
How it is I cannot tell, 
Yet I feel the magic spell 
Of the quiet Sabbath grace, 
Always breathing from her face, 
And her voice so calm and clear 
Lifts me to a higher sphere. 
And unlocks my spirit's powers. 
Gentle thoughts spring up like flowers. 
Gems deep hidden in my heart 



MARTHA. 



49 



Into life and being start 

When that saintly face I see, 

Heaven and immortality 

They grow clearer unto me. 

She's acquaint with sin and sorrow, 

Knows their weary burdens thorough, 

And her hearth is the retreat 

Of sad hearts, and weary feet ; 

And while others find but flaws, 

Quoting still the moral laws. 

She but thinks of what is human, 

Loves them all, the dear old woman ! 

Time, which makes most heads but hoary. 

Changed hers to a crown of glory. 

Many — ah ! many a benediction 

From the children of affliction, — 

Blessings from the haunts of care 

Nestle mid the glory there ; 

And she always seems to me 

An embodied prophesy 

Of a better world to be. 



^ W' •- V ^"V 



60 



MISCELLANEOUS BOEMS. 



CHANGE. 




,H ! how wondrous are the changes 
Every day and hour we see ; 
Things to make us ask in wonder, 

" Wherefore ? and oh what are we ?" 
Things more wonderful than fiction, . 

Or the poet's wildest dreams ; 
Things enough to make us question 
If this world is what it seems. 

Change ! change ! surpassing strange 1 

What fearful changes come ! 
The stars grow pale, the prophets fail, 
The oracles are dumb. 



Men come forth in strength rejoicing. 
And they bid the world take note 
Of their comings and their goings, 
And the mighty works they've wrought ; 
Deeming that they are immortal. 

How like gods they walk the scene. 
Time looks in, and lo ! they vanish — 
Rubb'd out as they ne'er had been. 

Change 1 change ! surpassing strange ! 
Their pomp, their power, and glory 
Are all forgot : were, and are not — 
The old eternal story. 



Nations spring as 'twere from nothing. 
And are nxighty in their day — 

But to wax, and wane, and crumble, 
And to nothing pass away. 




Great Niagara with his thunders, 

And the towering Alps sublime ; 
Earth and sky with all their wonders, 
Bubbles on the flood of time. 

Change 1 change ! surpassing strange ! 

Can such things surely be ; 
All hurried past, and lost at last 
In Death's eternal sea ? 



Oh ! Creation's but a vision 

Seen by the reflective eye ; 
But a panoramic pageant 

Pictur'd on the evening sky. 
There is nothing here abiding — 

There is nothing what it seems ; 
Airy all, and unsubstantial, 

Wavering in a world of dreams. 

Change ! change ! surpassing strange ! 

Is time's eternal chorus ; 
We hardly know the road we go. 
Or the heavens bending o'er us. 



Shall we give ourselves to pleasure ? 

Drench with wine the brow of care ? 
That were but the coward's refuge, 

But a hiding from despair. 
Shall we wed us to Ambition, 

Love, or Fame's alluring round ? 
Ah, alas ! its promised glories • 

End but in a grassy mound. 

Change ! change ! surpassing strange ! 

There's nothing sure but sorrow ; 
And we must bear our load of care. 
Nor dream of rest to-morrow. 



62 MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



Shall we put our trust in knowledge 

Men have garner'd here below ? 
Ah ! the fruit of all their labour's 

But a heritage of woe. 
Oh ! the sum of all the knowledge, 

Gamer'd underneath the sky, 
Is that we are born to suflTer, 
Is that we are bom to die. 

Change ! change ! surpassing strange 1 

Our knowledge comes to naught ; 
And we are fooled and over-ruled 
By the very things we sought. 



.■v/W">.y\,v-vyv\/\/vrj^ ■>-"« .•^."-■^ .'--', 



THE WISE WOMAN. 



53 



THE WISE WOMAN. 




RAW near, think not my tale absurd, 
For truth is strange, I ween ; 
I'll tell thee what mine ears have heard. 

And what mine eyes have seen. 
From childhood I was void of faith 

In visions, dreams and seers ; 
The Spirit-World was all a myth, 
Begot of hopes and fears. 



But wandering through the vale of Doubt, 

While all its gloom I felt. 
At last I sought the cottage out. 

Where the wise woman dwelt. 
** This is the place at last," I said, 

" Where foolish people go ; 
But of the unretuming dead 

What can the Sibyl know ? 

" The future black is all a track 

Of darkness and of doubt ; 
No ghost has ever yet come back 

To let the secret out. 
We're travellers ih a desert Iodc, 

And only this we know — 
We issue from the Great Unknown, 

And back to it we go. 



" From mystery to mystery. 
The fools of Hope and Doubt, 



54 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



"We weave our little history, 
And then Death rubs us out ; 

And, reft of our identity, 
We can have no hereafter." 

I paused in fear, for I could hear 
Sounds as of smothered laughter. 

And, plainly as you hear me now, 

A voice pronounced my name, 
Told me my thoughts, and why, and how 

I to the woman came ; 
And there she sat as still as death, 

For in a trance was she ; 
And yet I felt a living breath, 

Warm, breathing upon me. 

And while along my veins it stole, 

And I was lost in wonder, 
A light burst in upon my soul, 

A veil was rent asunder. 
And there were knockings on the walls. 

And whispers long and low. 
And shadows, as through empty halls, 

Were wav'ring to and fro. 



And I was touched by hands uDseen,^ 

When there was no one near : 
While secrets of the dead, I ween, 

Were whispered in mine ear. 
And all at once — I knew not how — 

A heavenly calm came o*er me ; 
When, with a glory on its brow, 

A spirit stood before me. 



THE WISE WOMAN, 



55 



More beautiful it seemed to me 

Than any of earth's sons, 
And clothed in all the majesty 

Of the immortal ones. 
That being— once of mortal breath, 

But now a soul sublifne — 
Stood there, the victor over Death 

And all the shocks of Time. 



The Herald of th' Eternal One ! 

In mercy sent to me, 
Demonstrating beneath the sun, 

Man's immortality. 
And, lo 1 it spake : " Te mortals make 

Your own Heaven or your Hell ; 
Not by your creeds, hwt by your deeds. 

Shall ye he judged. Farewell." 

When I essayed to question it 

Of glories " over there," 
Lo, it was gone 1 and, all alone, 

I talked to empty air. 
But still that spirit holds control, 

Still watches over me. 
For ever singing in my soul, 

Of glories yet to be. 



^-^^ '> ^ - 



56 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS 



TRADITIONS. 

^y URR AHT! for the great Diana, 
CW*^ And whatsoe'er ye do, 
Be sure to prop the old up, 
And sacrifice the new. 

Ye lean upon old traditions, 

To question them's a sin. 
And stifle the holiest promptings 

Of the God that speaks within. 

Ye clog the soul of Nature 

With your wretched little creeds ; 

Then hold up your hands in wonder, 
At the dearth of noble deeds. 

Ye pray for the gods to guide you. 
Yet, when the God appears. 

Yell have no gods but the old ones, 
And pierce His side with spears. 

Ye boast of your achievements. 
Your feats with the tongue and pen. 

Til the gods look down in wonder 
At the little sons of men. 



Hurrah ! for the great Diana, 
And whatsoe'er ye do, 

Be sure to prop the old up, 
And sacrifice the new. 



THE SEER. 57 




THE SEER. 

HE temple was a ruined heap^ 
With moss and weeds overgrown, 
And there the old Seer stood entranced, 

Beside the altar stone ; 
Time's broken hour-glass at his feet, 

In mouldering fragments lay ; 
And tombstones, whose old epitaphs 
Were eaten all away. 

He pointed ever and anon, 

His eye fixed upon air. 
While thus he talked to shadowy forms, 

Which seemed to hover there. 



" On, on, to the regions lone, 

The generations go ; 
They march along to the mingled song 

Of hope, of joy, and woe. 
On, on, to the regions lone. 

For there's no tarrying here, 
And the hoary past is joined at last. 

By all it held so dear. 

" There, there, on the edge of air, 

How fleetly they do pass, 
I see them all, both great and small. 

Like pictures in a glass. 
Long, long, is the motley throng. 

Of every creed and clime. 
With the hopes and fears, the smiles and tears, 

Of the young and the olden time. 



E 



58 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 



" Round, round, on their earthly mound, 

The laden ages reel. 
No creak, no sound, to the ceaseless round. 

Of Time's eternal wheel. 

" There, there, with their long grey hair. 

Are the patriarchs of our race ; 
A glory's shed on each hoary head, 

As they pass with solemn pace ; 
Earth, earth, there were men of worth, 

When they were in their prime, . 
There was less of art, and more of heart,. 

In that happy golden time. 

" There, there, are the ladies fair, 

That danced in the lordly hall ; 
And the minstrel grey, whose simple lay 

Was a joy to one and all. 
Fleet, fleet, were your fairy feet, 

And ye knew the joy of tears. 
While the minstrel wove the tale of love, 

With its hopes, its doubts, and fears. 



" There, there, still fresh and fair, 

I see them march along. 
The bowmen good, in the gay green .wood, 

And I hear their jocund song. 
See, see, how the green oak tree, 

With shouts they circle in. 
And the stakes are set, and the champions met, 

And the merry games begin. 

" Round, round, on their earthly mound, 

The laden ages reel. 
No creak, no sound, to the ceaseless round, 

Of Time's eternal wheel. 



THE SEER. 



59 



" Hold, hold ! Ye were barons bold, 

I know- by the garb ye wear, 
The lofty head, and the steady tread, 

And the trusty blades ye bear ; 
Where, where, a^e your mansions rare, 

And the lordly halls ye built ; 
Gone, gone, and how little's known 

Of your glory or your guilt. 

" Away, away, as if to the fray. 

Ah, there they madly rush. 
And in their path of woe and wrath, 

There's a dark deep purple blush ; 
Here, here, like the autumn sere. 

The hoary Palmers come. 
Their tales they tell, of what befell. 

And the listening groups are dumb. 

" Round, round, on their earthly mound, 

The laden ages reel, 
No creak, no sound, to the ceaseless round, 

Of Time's eternal wheel 

" Lo 1 Lo 1 what a splendid woe, 

, Yon rearward host reveals. 

It marches there with its golden care, 

To the soimd of steam and wheels ; 
Speed, speed, oh. Guile and Greed, 

Are surely a monstrous birth. 
Let wan Despair weave fabrics rare. 

And gold be the god of earth. 



" Oh 1 oh 1 what a sigh of woe. 
Is from its bosom rolled, 

What f8>ces peer like winter drear, 
'Mid the glitter and the gold. 



60 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 



Still, still, amid all this ill, 

There are souls with a touch sublime. 
Who nobly strive to keep alive, 

The hope of a happier time. 

" Round, round, on their earthly mound. 

The laden ages reel, 
No creak, no ^ound, to the ceaseless round, 

Of Time's eternal wheel 



" Hail ! hail ! to those shadows pale, 

For they were the men of thought ; 
And the crags were steep, and the mines were deep, 

Where painfully they wrought ; 
Speak 1 speak ! why the secret keep \ 

This mystery I would know. 
Say, what is breath, and life and death, 

And whither do we go ? 

" Still, still, not a word ye will 

Vouchsafe to my greedy ear, 
The crags are steep, and the mines are deep, 

And I can only hear : 
On, on, Bvery age has gone, 

With its burden on its back. 
And spite our will with our good and ill. 

We follow in the track.- 



" Round, round, on their earthly mound. 

The laden ages reel, 
No creak, no sound, to the ceaseless round, 

Of Time's eternal wheel." 



THE ANGLO-SAXON. 61 




THE ANGLO-SAXON. 

HE Anglo-Saxon leads the van, 
And never lags behind, 
For was not he ordained to be 

The leader of mankind ? 
He carries veiy Utile sail. 
Makes very little show, 
But gains the haven without fail. 
Whatever winds may blow. 

* 

He runs his plough in every land. 

He sails on every sea. 
All prospers where he has avhand. 

For king of men is he. 
He plants himself on Afric's sand. 

And 'mong Spitzbergen's snows. 
For he takes root in any land, 

And blossoms like the rose. 

Into the wilderness he goes. 

He loves the wild and free. 
The forests stagger 'neath his blows, 

A sturdy man is he. 
To have a homestead of his own, 

The giants down he'll bring — 
His shanty's sacred as a throne. 

And there he'll reign a king. 

For let him plant him where he may, 

On this you may depend. 
As sure as worth will have the sway, 

He's ruler in the end. 



62 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



For he believes in thrift, and knows 

The money-making art, 
But tho' in riches great he grows, 

They harden not his heart. 

He never knows when he is beat ; 

To knock him down is vain. 
He's sure to get upon his feet^ 

And into it again. 
If you're resolved to be his foe, 

You'll find him rather tough. 
But he'll not strike another blow 

Whene'er you call " enough." 

His is a nature true as steel, 

Where many virtues blend, 
A head to think, a heart to feel, 

A soul to comprehend. 
I love to look upon his face, 

Whate'er be his degree. 
An honour to the human race, 

The king of men is he. 



.'V. N^"V. "n- w"o \rf> 



^X.'V X-s ^-'■v. v.. v^N 



WHERE" ER WE MA Y WANDER, 



63 



WHERE'ER WE MAY WANDER. 




HEREER we may wander, 
Whatever be our lot, 
The heart's first affections, 

Still cling to the spot. 
Where first a fond mother, 
With rapture has prest. 
Or sung us to slumber, 
In peace on her breast. 



Where love first allured us, 

And fondly we hung 
On. the magi^l music, 

Which fell from her tongue 1 
Tho' wise ones may tell us, 

Twas foolish and vain. 
Yet, when shall we drink of 

Such glory again. 

Where hope first beguiled us, 

And spells o'er us cast, 
And told us her visions, 

Of beauty would last ; 
That earth was an Eden, 

Untainted with guile, 
And men were not destined 

To sorrow and toil. 



Where friendship first found us. 
And gave us her hand, 

And linked us for aye, to 
That beautiful band. 



64 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



Oh, still shall this heart be, 
And cold as the clay, 

Ere one of their features, 
Shall from it decay. 

fortune, thy favours 

Are empty and vain ; 
Restore me the friends of 

My boyhood again ; 
The hearts that are scattered, 

Or cold in the tomb, 
O give me again, in 

Their beauty and bloom. 

Away with ambition, 

It brought me but pain, 
give me the big heart 

Of boyhood again ; 
The faith and the friendship, 

The rapture of yore, 
shall they re- visit 

This bosom no more. 



1 



A SONG OF CHARITY. 



65 



A SONG OF CHARITY. 

iS-OME, sing a song of Charity, 
O may she ne'er forsake us ! 
For good or bad, we're all what God 

And circumstances make us. 
What's clear to me, is dim to thee. 

Opinions are divided ; 
Tis hard to judge what's wholly fudge. 

For things are many-sided. 

I hae a few thoughts o' mine ain, 

Wi nae ane would I niflfer, 
On sich points baith may be mistean. 

So let's agree to differ. 
And sing a song of Charity, 

And may she ne'er forsake us, 
For good or bad, we're all what God 

And circumstances make us. 

Yet men will sigh, and wonder why 

The bigot's hither sent, 
Such solemn fools are but the tools 

To work out God's intent. 
may we never do them wrong, 

Such, still, has been our prayer, 
For had our lot been their's, I wot 

We'd just been such as they are. 

But tho' so mad, the wars we've had — 
When Death shall send us thither — 

For all that's past, we hope at last 
To meet in light together. 

Then sing a song of Charity, 
And pray for truth to aid us ; 

For good or bad, we're all what God 
And circumstances made us. 



\ 



66 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS 



CATHOLIC MOTHER AND CBJLD. 




" wad some Power the giffcie gie us, 
To see onrselves as ithers see us." 

—Burns. 

CHILD. 

OU tell me, mother, of God's grace, 
Which doth so freely flow, 
But, will it ever reach the place 
Where Protestants do go ? 

MOTHER. 

No doubt they're a rebellious race. 

And hard for God to bear ; 
And yet, I hope, redeeming grace 

May reach them even there : 
For God may not be quite so hard 

As pious Fathers say; 
And Christ, for them, may speak a word 

Before the judgment day. 

CHILD. 

But are they not wilfully blind 

To what is plain to see ? 
I cannot comprehend what kind 

Of people they can be. 

MOTHER. 

My child, if God with them can bear. 
Then why should we condemn ? 

There may be some good people there, 
Yes, even among them. 



CATHOLIC MOTHER AND CHILL. 67 


Tiike ua, no doubt, they hope and fear, 


And feel the power of love ; 


And shed for human woe a tear. 


And pray to God above. 


CHILD. 


If good, why hold they us in spite 


So terrible and strong ? 


It's all because we're in the right, 


And they are in the wrong. 


MOTHER. 


But they may think that they are right, 


And I am told they say 


They have the true and only light, 


And we are all astray. 

1 


» 1 

CHILD. 


But they might know that is not so, 


Would they but choose to see ; 


They will not hear with willing ear, 


What wretches they must be ! 


MOTHER. 


I cannot from myself conceal 


The bad course they pursue. 


But sometimes they must think and feel 


The very way we do. 


Sometimes I think, if they are good — 


Tho' they may not repent. 


That God may — ^as I'm sure I would ! — 


Have mercy and relent. 



68 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



CHILD. 



But ahy they must be wicked, who 
Would scorn the Virgin so ; 

Why can't they do as others do, 
And to the altar go ? 



MOTHER. 



No doubt, my child, they put to shame 

The Saviour every day ; 
But 'tis their priests that are to blame. 

For leading them astray. 



CHILD. 



But our priests say, they take delight 
In wicked things they do ; 

And they would even think it right 
To murder Pa and you. 



MOTHER. 



It may be so, I do not know, 

I hope it is not true ; 
Despite the priest, I hope at least 

They know not what they do. 
I often hope it can't be true, — 

As pious Fathers tell — 
Their little ones, just such as you, 

God foreordained to Hell ! 
He may not spare old ones who have 

In wickedness increased ; - 
But 0, 1 think he'll surely save 

The little babes at least. 



CATHOLIC MOTHER AND CHILD. 



69 



CHILD. 



Well, good or bad, I*m very glad 
They live across the sea ; 

I hope and pray they never may 
Come nearer unto me. 



MOTHER. 

Ah no my child ! that is not right ! 

Our duty is to pray 
They may be brought to see the light, 

And seek the better way. 
And this I know, that great and small, 

And bad tho' they may be. 
That I would save them, one and all. 

If it were left to me. 



70 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 



AWFUL SPIRIT. 




OD ! who can Thee comprehend ! 

Without beginning, without eqcl, 
With no future, with no past ! 
Ever present, first and last; 
In the great, as in the small. 
Omnipresent " All in All ! " 
Nature's ramjmrts — hill and rock, 
Men's great cities pass like smoke ; 
Time and nature shrink away, 
But Thou knowest no decay : 
All shall perish 'neath the gun — 
Thou art the Eternal One ! 
In Thine everlasting now, 
Awful Spirit ! — ^what art Thou ? 

At Thy works, so great and vast, 
Speculation stands aghast ; 
Everywhere infinite might. 
Height still towering over height. 
Far beyond mind's utmost sweep. 
Deep still yawning under deep, 
Heaven above, earth rolling under. 
All is wonder piled on wonder ! 
Wisdom ! glory ! power unbounded ! 
Until reason stands confounded. 
What of Thee can mortals say ? 
Silence is for things of clay ! , 
StiU we ask the " whence, and how ?" 
Awful Spirit ! — what art Thou ? 

Artists ne'er can represent 
Thy overhanging firmament, 




Or the Mom, in robes of glory, 
Walking on the mountains hoary ; 
When the shadows hear Thy voice, 
And the awful hills rejoice, 
With their peaks in purple dyed, 
In Thy smile aU glorified. 
Who can bring to soul or sight 
Thy unfathomed gulfs of night ? 
Or the awful shadowy power, 
Looking through the midnight hour, 
When repentance makes her vow — 
Awful Spirit 1 — ^what art Thou ? 

How can poet catch the tune 
Rising from Thy groves at noon — 
When each leaf and flow'ret sings 
Of unutterable things ; 
Who can note the full-heart strains 
Swelling from Thy forest fanes. 
Or the thunder, and the leap 
Of the torrent-8 down the steep ; 
Or the laughter of the rills. 
Or the silence of the hills, 
Or divine the soul that broods 
O'er Thine awful solitudes ? — 
Or the calm on Ocean's brow ? — 
Awful Spirit ! — ^what art Thou ! 



Turn we wheresoever we will, 
Thou, God ! art with us still ; 
We are never all alone, — 
There's a presence in each stone ; 
All the air is full of eyes 
Looking on us with surprise ; 
Sympathies run everywhere, 
Thoughts are hurrying through the air, 



72 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



Bringing near, related souls, 
Though asunder as the poles ; 
Marvel upcm marvel ! — still 
Miracle on miracle ! — 
More than proud man will avow, — 
Awful Spirit ! — what art Thou ? 

Yet Thine ancient bards have brought 
Wonders from Thy realms of thought ; 
With their weird and wizard spells 
They have wrought their miracles, 
Started forms which make us start, 
Things immortal as Thou art ! 
But those wondrous works divine. 
Great Immaculate are Thine ! 
Awful things the prophets saw 
In their ecstasies of awe, 
In the body laid asleep, 
Sailing the eternal deep ;• 
Faith the helm, and hope the prow — 
Awful Spirit ! — what art Thou ? 



Dreamer vain and Pantheist, 
May define Thee as they list ; 
As in childhood, we would rather 
Look upon Thee as " Our Father." 
High in Heaven, Thy holy city. 
Looking down in love and pity, 
On Thy sons of fiery clay 
Fighting out life's tragedy. 
We believe "Almighty Father," 
Thou shalt all Thy children gather. 
Where the light eternal flows. 
And no wandVer asks, " who knows V 
Seeing not as we see now — 
Awful Spirit ! — what art Thou ? 



TO A VIOLET, 



73 



TO A VIOLET. 




H lovely little violet blue, 
:What language e'er can teU mj true, 
My strange relationship to you. 

For, gazing on thy lovely face, 
A living beauty and a grace, 
A strange humanity I trace. 

And yet thou mak'st me heave a sigh 
For things that never meet the eye, 
For things well know not till we die. 

In the^pure regions of thy smile. 
We war above the mean and vile. 
And everything that can defile. 

Tho' springing from an earthly clod. 
Thou tellest me of a bright abode. 
Where all things lovely dwell with God. 

Save for such visitants as thee. 
How very weary we would be 
Of this load of mortality. 

Our spirits would be dark as night, 
But for such gleams of beauty bright ; 
Thou living rapture, thou delight ! 

And thou hast come my lovely flower, 

A visitant from Beauty's bower ; 

Her dew-drops on our hearts to shower. 



74 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS, 



And thou hast come to talk to me 
Of that fair world where we shall be 
From every sin and sorrow free. 

And thy pure spiritual speech , 
Into my inmost soul does reach, 
I feel — ^yet know not what you teach. 

For, lovely flower, thou art arrayed 

With feelings that can never fade, 

And thoughts for which no words are made. 

I vainly strive to fathom thee, 
For thou canst only be to me 
A beauty and a mystery. 



r---N.'V\.- <J \X W"n» ' 



STABS. 75 




STARS. 

TELL me not of mighty wars ! 
:^Sliut out the world and all its jars, 
And leave me with God and the stars. 

Ah, there ye keep your courses bright, 
Old revellers in the hall of night, 
Looking down on us with delight. 

Ye, in that mystic vault were hung, 
Ere mortals into being sprung ; — 
Before Greece was, or Homer sung. 

At God*s command ye rose in space, 
Bright beauteous orbs, to gem, to grace 
The portals of His dwelling place ! 

And priests, and prophets, sages hoar, 
Looked up to worship and adore 
In that old world which is no more. 

Untouched by time, or tempest shocks, 
Bright as when David fed his flocks 
Among Judea's rugged rocks : 

He gazed on you as I do now, 

With wondering heart, and anxious brow — 

Asked the unanswerable " luyw ?" 

We are the lords but of a day ; 
Ye saw Great Alexander sway 
An empire that has passed away. 



76 



MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. 



Where is he ? echo answers "where ?" 
But still ye keep your courses there, 
As bright, as beautiful, and fair ! 

Infinite temple ! for no sect 
Wert thou so wonderfuJly decked 
By the Almighty Architect. 



Yet all those worlds shall cease to be ; 
Yet, Father, thou hast given to me 
The gift of immortality ! 



IF YOU WOULD BE MASTER, 



77 



IF YOU WOULD BE MASTER. 




HIS life is a struggle ! a battle at best, 
A journey in which there's no haven of rest; 
And craggy and steep is the path you must tread, 
If you would be master, and sit at the head. 



The gods had their battles, they fought for their thrones, 
They mounted up to them with struggles and groans ; 
And so the frail mortal must soar above dread, 
If he would be master, and sit at the head. 

O never strike sail to a cowardly fear ! 

And welcome for God's sake the taunt and the jeer, 

And look at the devil without fear or dread, 

If you would be master, and sit at the head. 

Be humble and lowly, be upright and brave ; 
Be often the servant, but never the slave ; 
Submit to be bullied, but never be led, 
If you would be master, and sit at the head. . 

The laws of creation insist on respect ; 
Believe in the virtues of cause and effect ; 
Trust only to truth, and you'll ne'er be misled. 
If you would be master, and sit at the head. 



Renounce all deception, all cunning, and lies, 
Let truth be the pinion on which you would rise ; 
Believe aU deception is rotten and dead, 
If you would be master, and sit at the head. 




O SPREAD THE GLAD TIDINGS. 




SPREAD the glad tidings ! with rapturous voice, 
,^j^^ Ye peoples and nations all shout and rejoice ; 
The long night of doubt and distraction is past, 
And the bright sun of knowledge has risen at last. 
We know that the soul shall immortally bloom, 
For a glorious light has burst in on the tomb, 
And death is no longer the angel of gloom. 

The seventh seal's broken ! the herald's gone forth ! 

Communion's established 'twixt heaven and earth. 

With songs of rejoicing the glad tidings spread — » 

The dear ones are living we mourned for as dead : 

They've changed but their garments, they've gone but before, 

Tho' they left us to weep on Time's desolate shore. 

Yet, they'll come to welcome us, parting no more ! 

To souls that are groping their way in the dark, 
O, welcome's the dawn and the song of the lark. 
And welcome's the beams of the bright morning star. 
But this is a glory more welcome by far I 
dearer than sunshine ! more precious than gold ! 
And greater than that by the prophets foretold. 
Or aU that was longed for by sages of old ! 

Then sing, for the dark veil at last is withdrawn ; 
Rejoice in the light of this glorious dawn ; 
We hoped against'hope through the weariful past. 
But faith's superseded by knowledge at last 
We stumble no longer 'twixt doubt and despair, 
For we know there's a region surpassingly fair. 
We know that the Summer-land's shining up there. 



SPREAD THE GLAD TIDINGS, 



79 



Then sing, for the wild reign of terror is o'er ! 

And the tales of earth's childhood can frighten no more. 

Superstition and all her dark brood is o'ercast, 

And the great King of Terrors discrowned is at last. 

Let the voice of your gladness in anthems ascend, 

Spread the tidings of joy to earth's uttermost end, 

That Death is indeed poor humajiity's friend. 



. ■«. \ .-v n. -V. \ \ ■\r-^/\ /\ j^,r ^-\j\j\s\f\J^ r^ r^ . 



INSCRIBED 



TO 



ALEXANDER MACNABB, ESQ., 



TORONTO. 




Idyls of the Dominion. 



'' There is a pleasure in the pathless woods." 

« Byron. 



ELORA. 

LOVELY Elora ! thy valley and stream, 
Still dwell in my heart like a beautiful dream ; 
And everything peaceful and gentle I see, 
Brings back to ray bosom some image of thee. 
IVe roamed this Dominion allured by the beam 
Of wild woodland beauty, by valley and stream ; 
From lone Manitoulin all down to the sea ; 
But found ne'er a spot, sweet Elora, like thee. 



There's lone rocky grandeur away at the Sound, 
And down the St. Lawrence wild beauties abound; 
Quebec, towering proudly, looks down on the sea. 
And lone Gananoque there's beauty in thee ; 
And Barrie ! the lady that sits by the lake, 
O, would I could sing a sweet song for her sake ! 
But here in thy beauty a-list'ning the fall, 
0, lovely Elora ! thou'rt queen of them all. 




I 



84 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



If friends should forsake me, or fortune depart, 
Or love fly, and leave a great void in my heart ; 
0, then in my sorrow away I would flee, 
And hide from misfortune, Elora, in thee. 
Away from the world, with its falsehood and pride. 
In yon lowly cot where the smooth waters glide, 
I'd commune with Nature till death set me free. 
And rest then for ever, Elora, in thee. 



' <.' \J\; - • v'\'> '^/^.'^•»'•v/\/V 



THE HALL OF SHADOWS. 



85 



THE HALL OF SHADOWS. 




I HE sun is up, and through the woods, 
His golden rays are streaming.; 
The dismal swamp, and swale so damp, 

With faces bright are beaming. 
And in the wind-fall, by the creek. 

We hear the partridge drumming ; 
And strange bright things, on airy wings, 
Are all around us humming. 

The merry schoolboys, in the woods. 

The chipmonk are pursuing, 
And as he starts, with happy hearts. 

They're after him hallooing. 
The squirrel hears the urchins* cheers — 

They never catch him lagging — 
And on the beech, beyond their reach. 
Hear how the fellow's bragging ! 

The red-bird pauses in his song — 

The face of man aye fearing — 
And flashes like a flame along 

The border of the clearing. 
The humming-bird, above the flower, 

Is like a halo bending ; 
Or like the gleams, we catch in dreams, 

Of heavenly things descending. 

And hear the bugle of the bee 

Among the tufted clover 1 
This day, like thee, I'll wander free, 

My little wildwood rover ! 




Through groves of beech, and maple green, 

And pines of lofty stature ; 
By this lone creek, once more we'll seek 

The savage haunts of nature. 

See there a fioble troop of pines 

Have made a sudden sally, 
And all, in straight unbroken lines, 

Are rushing up the valley ; 
And round about the lonely spring 

They gather in a cluster. 
Then off again, till on the plain, 

The great battalions muster. 

And there the little evergreens 

Are clustering in the hollows, 
And hazels green, with sumachs lean 

Among the weeping willows ; 
Or sit in pride, the creek beside, 

Or through the valley ramble ; 
Or up the height, in wild delight. 

Among the rocks they scramble. 



And here a gorge, all reft and rent, 

With rocks in wild confusion, 
As they were by the wood-gods sent. 

To guard them from intrusion. 
And gulfs, all yawning wild and wide, 

As if by earthquakes shattered ; 
And rocks that stand, a grizzly band ! 

By time and tempest battered. 

Some great pines blasted in their pride, 
Above the gorge are bending. 

And rock-elms from the other side. 
Their mighty arms extending. 



THE HALL OF SHADOWS. 



87 



•4 
I 



And midway down the dark descent, 
One fearful hemlock's clinging, 

His headlong fall he would prevent, 
And grapnels out he's flinging. 

One ash has ventured to the brink, 

And tremblingly looks over 
That awful steep, where shadows sleep, 

And mists at noonday hoV^r. 
But further in the woods we go. 

Through beech and maple valleys, 
And elms that stand like patriarchs grand, 

In long dark leafy alleys. 

Away, away ! from blue-eyed day, 

The sunshine and the meadows ; 
We find our way, at noon of day. 

Within the Hall of Shadows. 
How like a great cathedral vast ! 

With creeping vines roofed over, 
While shadows dim, with faces grim, 

Far in the distance hover. 

Among the old cathedral aisles. 

And Gothic arches bending, 
And ever in the sacred pales, * 

The twilight gloom descending. 
And let me turn where'er I will, 

A step is aye pursuing ; 
xA.nd there's an eye upon me still. 

That's watching all I'm doing. 

And in the centre, there's a pool, 

And by that pool is sitting, 
A shape of Fear with shadows drear 

For ever round her flitting. 



88 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



Why is her face so full of woe ? 

So hopeless and dejected ? 
Sees she but there in her despair, 

Nought but herself reflected ? 

Is it the gloom within my heart, 

Or lingering superstition, 
Which draws me here three times a year 

To this weird apparition ? 
I cannot tell what it may be, 

I only know that seeing 
That shape of Fear, draws me more near 

The secret soul of being. 



J 



/ COME TO THE GREENWOOD SHADE, 



89 



Oi COME TO THE GREENWOOD SHADE. 




j COME to the greenwood shade, 
Away from the city's din, 
From the heartless strife of trade, 
And the fumes of beer and gin; 
Where commerce spreads her fleets, 

Where bloated luxury lies. 
And Want as she prowls the streets, 
Looks on with her woltish eyes. 

From the city with its sin. 

And its many coloured code. 
Its palaces raised to gin. 

And its temples reared to God ; 
Its cellars dark and dank. 

Where never a sunbeam falls, 
Amid faces lean and lank. 

As the hungry-looking walls. 

Its festering pits of woe, 

Ite teeming earthly hells, 
Whose surges ever flow. 

In sound of the Sabbath bells ! 
God ! I would rather be 

An Indian in the wood, 
And range through the forest free, 

In search of my daily food. 

! rather would I pursue, 
The wolf and the grizizly bear. 

Than toil for the thankless few. 
In those seething pits of care ; 



G 



\> 



90 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



Here winter's breath is rude, 
And his fingers cold and wan ; 

But what is his wildest mood, 
To the tyranny of man ? 

To the trackless forest wild. 

To the loneliest abode ; 
! the heart is reconciled, 

That has felt oppression's load I 
The desert place is bright. 

The wilderness is fair, 
If hope but shed her light, — 

If freedom be but there. 



THE GIPSY BLOOD. 



91 



THE GIPSY BLOOD. 




HE spring is here, with her voice of cheer, 
For the winter winds are gone ; 
And now with the birds, and the antler'd herds, 

My roving fit comes on. 
I long to be in th' forest free 
From civilization's chains ; 
For there's surely a flood of the Gipsy blood 
Still running in my veins ! 



My soul is sick of this smoke and brick, 

I long for a breath that's free ; 
The desert air, and the hunter's fare, 

The woods, the woods for me ! 
Where things unbroke by curb, or yoke. 

Bound through the green domains ; 
For there's surely a flood of the Gipsy blood 

Still running in my veins ! 

I'm sick of trade, for its ways have made 

These artificial men ; 
I long to be with the wild and free. 

In the trackless savage^glen. 
For all my life has been a stf ife 

With their bridles, curbs, and chains ; 
For there's a flood of the Gipsy blood 

Still running in my veins ! 



O ! why should I moil, and strain and toil 
For the lifeless things of art ? 



92 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



While the greenwood bowers, and the wild wood flowers 

Are springing in my heart — 
Yes, deep in my heart, devoid of art 

A savage spot remains ; 
For there's a flood of the Gipsy blood 

Still running in my veins ! v 

Let who may dweU, to buy and seD, 

Tm off with the roving clan ; 
For what are your gains, but curbs and chains 

To the freebom soul of man ? 
I'm off and away with the joyous May, 

To freedom's glorious fanes ; 
For there's a flood of the Gipsy blood 

Still running in my veins ! 



-N.'^'</-v'\. 



J 



THE SBTTLERS SABBATH DAY. 



93 



THE SETTLER'S SABBATH DAY. 




ELCOME to the weary worn ! 
Welcome to the heart forlorn ! 
Welcome, sacred Sabbath morn ! 

Peace from yonder clouds descending, 
Heaven and earth again are blending, 
And the woods in worship bending. 

Yonder distant hill-pines lie 
On the bosom of the sky, 
Musing on things deep and high. 

Yea, the very swamp has caught 
Something like a holyHhought, 
And its face with love is fraught. 

While yon ancient elms extend 
Their great arms, and arch and blend 
Into cloisters without end. 

Forming many a still retreat, 
Where the noon-tide shadows meet. 
Ever on their noiseless feet. 

Blessed Mom I thou'rt welcome here 

To the backwoods Pioneer, 

Far from all his heart holds dear. 



He has wandered far away 
From the land of mountains grey, 
Where his children are at play : 



94 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



Urged by independence on. 
Far into these wilds unknown, 
He has ventured all alone. 

Freedom whispered in his breast, 
He would find a home of rest 
In the forests of the west. 

But he found it hard to part 
From the partner of his heart, 
In that cottage by the Cart. 

And his little children three, 
Crowding all around his knee. 
Whom he never more might see. 

In his log-built cabin rude, 

In the forest solitude. 

There he sits in thoughtful mood. 

" Who," he asks, " at God's behest 
Will lead forth His poor oppressed 
To this Refuge in the West ? 

" While these wilds cry out for toil. 
To produce their com and oil, 
Men starve on their native soil ! 

" Willing hearts are left to wither, 
Bring, O, bring the workers hither ! 
Bring the lands and hands together." 

From such thoughts he turns away. 

For on this, God's Holy Day, 

He would hear what prophets say. 

Even Bums, he puts aside ! 

Burns ! his week-day joy and pride, 

Bums ! so human, wHd and wide. 



THE SETTLERS SABBATH DAT. 



95 



And he brings from out its nook, 
That great Book of books, the Book ! 
On its sacred page to look. 

Now some song of Israel's King , 
Comes as on an angel's wing, 
Through his very soul to sing : 

Songs, that bring a joy untold I 
Songs, more precious far than gold ! 
Songs, that never can grow old ! 

Sung by martyrs in the glen. 
And in sorrow's darkest den 
Cheer the souls of weary men. 

Now he reads the tragic story. 
How the world in sin grown hoary, 
Crucified the Son of Glory : 

He— the hope of every clime, 
He — the sole bright star in time, 
Solitary soul sublime ! 

Then his knee to Heaven he bends, 
For his children and his friends, 
All his soul in prayer ascends. 

May God guide them o'er the deep,^ 
As a shepherd guides his sheep. 
Once more to his arms to leap ! 

Now he prays for all in pain, 
For the wretched and insane. 
And his tears they fall like rain : 

Pleading for the sons of crime. 
The despised, the dross, the slime, — 
Wretched, Lord in every clime. 



96 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



For the outcast in his lair. 
All that need a brother's care, 
Houseless vagrants everywhere ! 

Prays that mists may cease to blind 

Fellow- work men left behind, 

" May they, Lord, have strength of mind 

" To resist the drunken feast, 
Scorning all that has increased 
Their relation to the beast. 

" Let their worth appear in deeds, 
Not in whining of their needs, 
Or in mouthing of the creeds. 

4 

" Let them try to fill the ditch 
That divides the poor and rich, 
Like a seething lake of pitch. 

'* Ever doing what they can, 
Working out each noble plan. 
Calling forth the God in Man 1 

" Break, Lord ! the spell of birth, 
Haste the time when moral worth 
Shall take highest rank on earth. 

".Break the chains of creed and caste, 
Heal the wounds of all the past. 
Bring the reign of Love at last." 

Till the shadows lengthen grey, 
*Mong the woods in dark an'ay. 
Thus, he keeps the Sabbath day. 



A BACKWOODS' HERO. 



97 



A BACKWOODS' HERO. 



[Canada is prolific in heroes of its own ; men who venture into the 
wilderness, perhaps, with litCle save an axe and a determined will, and 
hew their way to independence. Almost every locality can point to 
some hero of this kind, who overname difficulties and dangers with a 
determination, which, in a wider sphere, would have commanded the 
admiration of the world. Energetic, inventive, sleepless souls, who 
fought with wild nature, cleared seed-fields in the forest, built mills, 
schools and churches where, but a few years before, naught was heard 
save the howl of the wolf and the whoop of the Indian. Who gathered, 
perhaps, a little community of hardy pioneers, around them, and to 
which they were Carpenter, Blacksmith, and Architect, Miller, Doctor, 
Lawyer and Judge, all in one. 

The following is a rough sketch, or portrait, of one such, with whom 
the author was long and intimately acquainted.] 

^^'L HERE yonder ancient willow weeps, 




The Father of the village sleeps ; 
Tho' but of humble birth, 
As rare a specimen was he, 
Of Nature's true nobility. 
As ever trod the earth. 
The busy head and hands are still ; 
Quenched the unconquerable will 
Which fought and triumphed here ; 
And tho' he's all unknown to fame, 
Yet grateful hearts still bless his name, 
And hold his mem'ry dear. 

He hither came in days when this 

Was all a howling wilderness, 

With little save his axe. 

And cut, and slashed, and hewed his way, 

And scarce a moment night or day 

His efforts did relax. 



98 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



For at it, with a will, he went, 
And aU his energies he bent. 
Determined to get through ; 
To him, all labour seemed but sport, 
The Summer-dky was far too short 
For all he had to do ! x 

He chopped, he logged, he cleared his lot. 

And into many dismal spot 

He let the light of day ; 

And through the long and dismal swamp, 

So dark, so dreary, and so damp, 

He made a turnpike way. 

The church, the school-house, and the mill. 

The store, the forge, the vat, the kiln. 

Were triumphs of his hand ; 

And many a lovely spot of green. 

Which peeps out there the woods between. 

Came forth at his command. 

What was it that he woiild not face ? 

He bridged the stream, he cut the race, 

Led water to the mill ; 

And planned and plodded night and day, 

'Till every obstacle gave way 

To his unconquered will. 

And he was always at our call, 

Was Doctor, Lawyer, Judge and all ; , 

And all throughout the Section, 

O, there was nothing could be done — 

No field from out the forest won. 

Save under his direction ! 

He drew up deeds, he measured land, 
For all the people thought and planned, 
Did aught to help a neighbour ; 
He always had so much to do, 



A BACKWOODS' HERO. 



99 



Folks wondered how he e'er got through, 

With such a load of labour. 

But something in his face said " work ! * 

The very dullest could not shirk, 

The deafest had to mind him ; 

And if he only looked or spoke, 

Or only said a word in joke, 

He left his mark behind him. 

All prospered where he had a hand ; 
The houses that he built would stand, 
.The seed he set would grow : 
And for his bait the fishes fought, 
The deer seemed willing to be caught — 
Twas strange, but it was so. 
His plan of things was aye the best ; 
He carried success in his breast. 
He had such art about him, 
Tbat, truly nothing could go on, 
Wer't but the rolling of a stone. 
It rolled not right without him. 

Yet he would never follow rules ; 
Systems of colleges and schools. 
To him were all unknown ; 
And in mechanics, and in trade, 
His calculations all were made, 
By systems of his own. 
Few were his words, yet what he said. 
Had aye the ring of " go-a-head," 
Improvement was his passion ; 
Tho' itito order much he brought, 
You always found him in a coat 
An age behmd the fashion. 

A feeling heart was in his breast. 
And cruelty to man or beast. 






L .. 



100 ' 



IDYL8 OF THE DOMINION. 



Found him a foe unsparing ; 

The two things which he could not bear, 

That often made the good man swear^ 

Wore gossip and tale- bearing. 

New comers, when their crops did fail, 

Would come and tell their mournful tale, 

And he would till a sack ; 

It always seemed to do him good, 

To give a hungry mortal food, 

And send him smiling back. 

If roughs assembled at a bee. 

And steaming with the " barley bree,*' 

They raged, and roared, and swaggered. 

As soon as e'er his face they saw. 

It held in reverential awe. 

The most regardless blackguard ! 

He had his enemies, no doubt. 

Such men, as he, are ne'er without 

A brood of spiteful lies ; 

Tho' styled by some " The Autocrat," 

He paid as small regard to that, 

As to the summer tiles. 

He sought not fame, nor did he e'er 

Find fault with his too narrow sphere, 

Tho' many a body said 

'^ He was the man who should be sent 

To rule our rabble Parliament, — 

It wanted such a head." 

And here he ruled, and here he reigned, 

And no man lost by what he gained ; 

And here he lies at rest ! 

And may his mem'ry never fade, 

And may the turf upon him laid,* 

Lie lightly on his breast ! 



•• •« 



•• • 



•"• 



•;• • 







SPARKING. 

IVE me the night when the moon shines bright, 
And the stars come forth to meet her, 
When the very snow is all aglow, 

And the dismal swamp looks sweeter ; 
When the cows are fed, old folks in bed, 

And young lads go a larking, 
And no one by with a prying eye, 
0, that's the time for sparking. 

When all the "chores" are done out doors, 

And the hearth is swept up trimly, 
And th' backlog bright, like a jovial wight, 

Is roaiing up the chimney. 
I listen oft, for his signal soft. 

Till Tray sets up his barking ; 
For dogs as well as folks must tell 

When anybody's sparking. 

IVe sat with him till th' log burned dim, 

And the owls were all too-whooing ; 
For don't they spark, too, in the dark, 

Aint that their way of wooing ? 
I ne'er could bear love anywhere, 

Where folks were all remarking — 
You act a part, but bless your heart. 

That's not what I call sparking. 

At public halls, pic-nics, and balls, 

The lads will try to please you ; 
But it takes the bliss all from a kiss. 

If anybody sees you. 
My old aunt says, in her young days, 

Folks never wooed the dark in ; 
It might be so, then Oh dear, oh ! 

They little knew of sparking. 



102 



IDYLS OF TBE DOMINION. 




NEIGHBOUR JOHN. 

HERE'S neighbour John, dull as a stone. 
An earthy man is he. 
In Nature's face, no single trace 

Of beauty can he see. 
He's wrought with her for sixty years ; 

Believes he did his duty ; 
Yet all that time saw naught sublime, 
Nor drank one draught of beauty. 

His only joy, as man and boy. 

Was but to plod and moil, 
Until his very soul itself 

Has grown into the soil. 
He sees no vision, hears no voice 

To make his spirit start ; 
The glory and the mystery 

Ne'er settl'd on his heart. 

The great vault's hanging o'er his head. 

The earth is rolling under. 
On which he's borne from night till morn. 

With not one look of wonder. 
Talk not to him of yonder clouds 

In glory mass'd together, 
John but beholds in all their folds 

Some index of the weather. 

Talk not of old cathedral woods. 

Their Gothic arches throwing, 
John only sees in all those trees; 

So many saw-logs growing. 
For in the woods no spirit broods. 

The grove's no longer haunted ; 
The gods have gone to realms unknown, 

And earth is disenchanted. 



NEIGHBOUR JOHN. 



103 



In Day, with all its bright array, 

And black Night still returning, 
He never saw one gleam of awe, 

Tho' all their lamps were burning ! 
Their seasons in their mystic round 

Their magic work are doing ; 
Spring comes and goes, the wild flower blows, 

And Winter's storms are brewing. 

And Indian Summer steps between. 

In robes of purple gleaming, 
Or in a' maze of golden haze. 

The live-long day is dreaming. 
John stands with dull insensate look, 

His very soul's grown hoary ! 
And sees in all, but sear leaves fall, 

And not one gleam of glory. 

For beauty and sublimity. 

Are but a useless blunder ; 
And naught can start awe in his heart. 

No, nothing short of thunder ! 
He knows the world's a solid world, 

And that a spade's a spade. 
And that for food and raiment, all 

The heavens and earth were made. 

He laughs at all our ecstasies. 

And he keeps still repeating 
" You say 'tis fair, but will it wear ? 

Or is it good for eating ? " 
And we can only say to him 

" That it is very tragic, 
To see but kites and appetites. 

Prowl in this Hall of Magic !" 



104 



IDYLS OF TEE DOMINION, 



FIRE IN THE WOODS, OR THE OLD SETTLER'S 

STORY. 




HEN first I settled in the woods, 
There were no neighbours nigh, 
And scarce a living thing, save wolves, 

And Molly dear, and I, 
We had our troubles, ne'er a doubt, 

In those wild woods alone ; 
But then, sir, I was bound to have 
A homestead of my own. 

This was ray field of battle, and 

The forest was my foe, 
And here I fought with ne'er a thought, 

Save '* lay the giants low." 
I toiled in hope — got in a crop. 

And Molly watched the cattle; 
To keep those " breachy ^ steers away, 

She had a weary battle. 

The devil's dears were those two steers. 

Ah ! they were born fence-breakers, 
And sneaked all day, and watched their prey. 

Like any salt-sea wreckers ; 
And gradually, as day by day, 

My crop grew golden yellow, 
My heart and hope grew with that crop, 

I was a happy fellow. 

That crop would set me on my feet. 

And I'd have done with care ; 
I built away, the live-long day. 

Such " castles in the air ! " 



FIRE IN THE WOODS. 



105 



rd beaten poverty at last, 

And like a little boy, 
When he haa got his first new coat, 

I fairly leapt for joy. 

I blush to think upon it yet, 

That I was such a fool, 
But young folks must learn wisdom, sir, 

In Old Misfortune's school. 
One fatal night, I thought the wind 

Oave some unwonted sighs, 
Down through the swamp, I heard a tramp. 

Which took me by surprise. 

Is this an earthquake drawing near ? 

The forest moans and shivers ; 
And then I thought that I could hear 

The rushing of great rivers ; 
And while I looked, and listened there, 

A herd of deer swept by, 
As from a close pursuing foe, 

They madly seem'd to fly. 

But still those sounds, in long deep bounds, 

Like warning heralds came. 
And then I saw, with fear and awe, 

The heavens were all aflame. 
I knew the woods must be on fire — 

I trembled for my crop, 
As I stood there in mute despair — 

It seem'd the death of hope. 

On, on it came, a sea of flame. 

In long deep rolls of thunder. 
And drawing near, it seem'd to tear 

The heavens and. earth asunder; 




How those waves snored, and raged, and roared. 

And reared in wild commotion ! 
On, on they came, like steeda of flame 

Upon a burning ocean. 

How they did snort, in fiendish sport. 

As at the great elms dashing. 
And how they tore 'mong hemlocks hoar, 

And through the pines went crashing. 
While serpents wound the trunks ai*ound. 

Their eyes like demons gleaming. 
And wrapped like thongs around the prongs, 

And to the crests went streaming. 

Ah ! how they swept, and madly leapt. 

From shrieking spire to spire, 
'Mid hissing hail, and in their trail, 

A roaring lake of fire ! 
Anon some whirlwind all aflame. 

Growled in the ocean under, 
Then up would reel a fiery wheel. 

And belch forth spipke and thunder. 

And it was all that we could do 

To save ourselves by^ flight. 
As from its track we madly flew, — 

Oh ! 'twas an awful night ! 
When all was past, I £rtood aghast, 

My crop and shanty gone. 
And blackened trunks 'mid smouldering chunks. 

Like spectres looking on. 

A host of skeletons they seemed. 

Amid the twilight dim. 
All standing there in their, despair. 

With faces gaunt and grim ; 



FIRE IN THE WOODS. 



107 



And I stood like a spectre too, 

A ruined man was I, 
And nothing left — what could I do 

But sit me down and cry ? 

A heavy heart indeed was mine, 

For I was ruined wholly, 
And I gave way that awful day 

To moping melancholy ; 
I lost my all, in field and stall, 

And nevermore would thrive. 
All save those steers — the devil's dears 

Had saved themselves alive, 

Nor would I have a farm to day, 

* Had it not been for Molly, 
She cheered me up, and charmed away 

My moping melancholy ; 
She schemed and planned to keep the land, 

And cultivate it too, 
And how I moiled, and strained, and toiled, 

And fought the battle through. 



Yes, Molly played her part full well. 

She's plucky every inch, sir. 
It seemed to me the "deil himsel," 

Could not make Molly flinch, sir ; 
We wrought, and fought until our star 

Got into the ascendant ; 
At troubles past, we smile at last. 

And now we're independent ! 



108 



IDYLS OF. THE DOMINION, 



THE MAN WHO ROSE FROM NOTHING. 




ROUND the world the fame is blown 
Of fighting heroes, dead and gone ; "* 
But we've a hero of our own — 
The man who rose from nothing. 

He's a magician great and grand ; 
The forests fled at his command ; 
And here he said, " let cities stand !" — 
The man who rose from nothing. 

And in our legislative hall 
He towering stands alone, like Saul, 
" A head and shoulders over all," — 
The man who rose from nothing. 

His efforts he will ne'er relax. 
Has faith in figures and in facts, 
And always calls an axe an axe, — 
, The ^ who ^ *^ noUung. 

The gentleman in word and deed ; 
And short and simple is his creed ; 
" Fear God and help the soul in need !" — 
The man who rose from nothing. 

In other lands he's hardly known. 
For he's a product of our own ; 
Could grace a shanty or a throne, — 
The man who rose from nothing. 

Here's to the land of lakes and pines, 
On which the sun of freedom shines, 
Because we meet on all our lines 
The man who rose from nothing. 



THE FINES. 



109 



THE PINES. 



<»ii 




'M free at last, from the city vast, 
Away with the running brooks. 
'Mong the savage woods, and th* roaring floods. 

And nature's glorious nooks ! 
The branches spread above my head, 
At my feet the woodbine twines ; 
All hail again ! in your blue domain. 
Great brotherhood of pine* ! 



Untouched by time, ye tower sublime. 

Aloft on your rocky steep, 
Te are seated there like lords of air, 

In your coimcil chambers deep ; 
On your burnished breasts, and your gleaning crests, 

A quiet halo shines, 
While the torrents sweep, and roar, and leap, — 

Great brotherhood of pines ! 

When mom awakes from out the lakes. 

Ye pour your holy hymn, 
And when dying day in her mantle grey, 

With her phantoms round you swim ! 
No harp has the ring, and no sounding string 

Such a flood of song combines ; 
Old Minstrels ye of the greenwoods be, 

Great brotherhood of pines ! 



When storms are high in the midnight sky. 
And the wild waves lash the shore. 

Afar up there, with your harps of air. 
Ye join in the wild uproar. 



110 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION, 



With the groaning woods, and the moaning floods, 

Your awful voice combines, 
And the deep refrain of the thunder's strain, — 

Great brotherhood of pines ! 



By the torrent's brim, on the rainbow's rim — 

I climb to your magic hall ; 
To hear you join in the song divine, 

Of the thund*ring waterfall. 
While through the screen of your golden green, 

A mystic spirit shines. 
Hail one and all ! in your magic hall. 

Great brotherhood of pines ! 



THE BACKWOODS PHILOSOPHER, 



111 



THE BACKWOODS PHILOSOPHER 




ELL, fius I said, I'm forest bred, 
A rough unculter'd critter, 
Yet, in some way, Tve read per day 

A page of forest natur'. 
Among the fust things I obsarv'd — 

My mates it didn't strike — 
What ar we do, well nar get two 
That see a tree alike. 



Folks may be honest and sincere. 

And may ha' eyes to see through, 
And hold a principle as dear, 

Tho' they don't see as we do. 
Now that's a very leetle fact. 

It seems as plain as prattle ; 
Would folks but see't 'twould save much heat 

And many, a many a battle. , 

Another thing which took my eye 

Was Natur's moral statur ; 
For Natur will not tell a lie. 

Nor won't have lies, will Natur ; 
A tree will fall the way she's cut. 

No words aside can win her. 
And smash you splay, if in her way. 

Let you be saint or sinner. 



And when you go to square her up, 
Nar heed what fools may say. 

Cut to the chalk, aye, that's the talk ! 
Let chips strike who they may. 



U2 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



He who would talk you off the straight^ 
You tell him that he drivels ; 

The right is right ! 'twill stand the lights 
Be*t God s law or the devil's. 

And he's no better than a fool, 

A little silly critter, 
Who thinks by cunnin' to out-pull 
Or cheat Old Mother Natur. 
Another thing which did me strike — 

While through the forest goin' — 
Your timber's always somethin' like 

The soil on which it's growin'. 

The elm will root em firm, I ween, 

'Mong rocks, and he will thrive 
Upon the spot where maples green 

Could hardly keep alive. 
And he will thrive and flourish thar, 

And to the winds he'll call, 
And talk wi' spirits o' the air, 

, Beside the waterfall. 

Yon oak's exposed to wind and rain, 

To every storm that swells. 
So every fibre, leaf and grain, 

His long life-battle tells. 
He gathers strength from every shock. 

And tougher still he grows, 
And looks defiance from the rock, 

To every storm that blows. 



While far within the shelterin' vale, 

The lady-maple leans. 
And tells her quiet peaceful tale, 

To gentle evergreens. 



THE BACKWOODS PHILOSOPHER. 



113 



Close by, a brother all misplaced, 

In an unfriendly soU, 
He fights and frete, until he gets 

Demoralized the while. 



Then sad and Jone, and woe-begone, 

To every wind he sighs, 
Besigns the strife for light an^ life, 

And sullenly he dies. 
So, like the tree, what we would be 

Depends not on our skill. 
And wrong, or right, are we, despite 

Our wishes or our will. 



114 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



OLD CANADA ; OR, GEE BUCK GEE. 




I HE eountry's goin' fast tp ruin ! 
This edication's our undoin', 
We're comin' to a pretty pass, 
Our boys who scarce have been to grass. 
Have all gone off, bound to the teachers. 
Or city clerks, or peddlin* preachers ; 
Our darters too, are quite Sultanas, « 
All strummin' on them cuss'd pianos, 
And try to trip us up yrith rules 
They've learned away at Grammar Schools, 
And look upon the likes o' me — 
Who nurs'd them criters on my knee — 
As far beneath them, — Gee Buck Gee ! 



And then they're all Book Farmers too ! 

And they would teach me what to do ; 

Manurin', ploughin', drainin', seedin'. 

All farmin's to be done by readin' ! 

Lord ! Lord 1 it makes me mad, 

When every striplin' o' a lad, 

And every edicated ass. 

Who scarce knows growin' wheat from grass. 

Must teach the like o' me to farm, 

Wi' Latin names as long's my arm ; 

Them criters teach the like o' me 1 

Who farm'd ere they could reach my knee, 

Aint it presumption ? — (Jee Buck Gee ! 



I tell ye what ! them and their books, 
Are getting to be perfect pukes ; 



\ 



OLD CANADA ; OR, GEE BUCK GEE. 



116 



And sure enough this edication 
Will be the ruin o* the nation ; 
^We'll not ha' men, it's my opinion, 
Fit to defend our New Dominion ; 
Not one o' them can swing an axe, 
But they will bore you with the facts ; 
I'd send the enters off to work, 
But that, by any means they'll shirk ! 
Grandad to some o' them I be, 
O, that's what riles and vexes me ! 
Ain't it a caution ? — Gee Buck Gee ! 



'>/vw V' VN/^w/v >.rx/\/\/v'v\rv/v\/\r 



116 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



COMPANIONS IN SOLITUDE, OR REMINIS- 
CENCES OF THE BUSH. 




HIS generation ne'er can know 
The toils we had to undergo, 
While laying the great forests low. 

For many a weary year I wrought, 
With poverty and hardship fought. 
And hardly had I time for thought. 

In every stroke, in every blow. 
In every towering pine laid low, 
I felt a triumph o'er a foe. 

Each knotty hemlock old and brown, 
Each elm in thunder hurling down, 
A jewel added to my crown. 

If e'er my heart within me died. 

Then up would start my stubborn pride. 

And dash the coward thoughts aside ! 

And hope kept singing in mine ear, 
" Be brave ! for what hast thou to fear — 
The heavens are watching o'er thee here !" 

But fighting with those stubborn facts, 
My spirit paid a heavy tax, — 
My soul grew callous as my axe. 



COMPANIONS IN SOLITUDE. 



117 



But stiU some wandering sympathy, 
Some song — ^learned on my mother's knee* 
Came with the bread of life to me. 



Save, for those rain-drops from on high — 
Those fountains opened in the sky — 
My life streams would have aU gone dry. 

Until that time, I little knew 
What books for lonely hearts can do, 
Till spirits round my hearth they drew. 



My cabin seemed a whole world wide ! 
Kings entered in without their pride, 
And warriors laid their swords aside 1 



There came the Saxon, there the Celt, 
And all had knelt where I had knelt, 
For all had felt what I had felt ! 



I saw, — from cUme and creed apart, — 
StiU heaving 'neath their robes of arty— 
The universal human heart. 



And Homer, and Sir Walter Scott — 
They entered in my humble cot, 
And cheered with tales my lowly lot. 



And Bums came singing songs divine, 
His heart and soul in every line ; 
A glorious company was mine ! 



118 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



T was a brother to the gi^eat ! 
Shakespeare himself on me did wait, 
With leaves torn from the Book of Fate. 



They asked me not of rank or creed, 
i!nd yet supplied my spirit's need; 
0, they were comforters indeed ! 

And showed me by their magic art 
Those awful things at which we start — 
That hover round the human heart ; 

Fate, ever watching with her shears ! 
And mixing all our hopes with fears, 
And drenching all our joys in tears. 

They showed how contradictions throng ; 
How by our weakness we are strong ; 
And how we're righted by the wrong: — 



Unveiled new regions to my sight, 
And made the weary winter's night, 
A perfect revel of delight ! 



YOUNG CANADA. 



119 




YOUNG CANADA, OR JACK'S AS GOOD AS 

HIS MASTER. 

LOVE this land of forest grand ! 
The land where labour's free ; 
Let others roam away from home, 

Be this the land for me ! 
Where no one moils, and strains and toils. 

That snobs may thrive the faster ; 
And all are free, as men should be. 
And Jack's as good's his master ! 

Where none are slaves, that lordly knaves 

May idle all the year; 
For rank and caste are of the past, — 

They'll never flourish here ! 
And Jew or Turk if he'll but work, 

Need never fear disaster ; 
He reaps the crop he sowed in hope. 

For Jack's as good's bis master. 

Our aristocracy of toil 

Have made us what you see — 
The nobles of the forge and soil. 

With ne'er a pedigree ! 
It makes one feel himself a man, 

His very blood leaps faster. 
Where wit or worth's preferred to birth. 

And Jack's as good's his master ! 

Here's to the land of forests grand ! 

The land where labour's free ; 
Let others roam away from home, 

Be this the land for me ! 
For here 'tis plain, the heart and brain, 

The very soul grows vaster ! 
Where men are free, as they should be. 

And Jack's as good's his master ! 



120 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 




THE OLD SETTLER'S ADDRESS TO HIS OLD 

LOG HOUSE. 

Y Old Log-House, I love^ thee still ! 
I left thee sore against my will ; 
My new house, finer tho* it be, 
Can never be as dear to me ; 
For memory's spell is o'er thee cast, 
And I must love thee to the last. 
For life's first breath in thee I drew, 
Li thee from youth to manhood grew, 
All early thoughts are twined with thee. 
And thy overhanging maple tree !* 
It seemed to me no other place 
Had ever half so sweet a face ; 
And on the winter nights and days, 
No hearth had half so bright a blaze 
Among the trees no taper shone 
With half the welcome of thine own, 
And when from thee I went away, 
In sunny southern lands to stray, 
'Mid all their bloom, my heart would flee, — 
Mine own log cabin — back to thee ! 

Tho' now thy household gods are gone, 
Still often I come here alone, 
And, on thy hearthstone, cold at last, 
I muse and ponder on the past ! 
Till parents, brothers, sisters dear, 
In all their beauty re-appear, 
Despite of death, the joyous train 
'Comes back to love me once again ! 
I see my father in his chair ! 
My mother with her knitting there 1 

The children crowding round, to hear 
The stories that we loved so dear; 



THE OLD SETTLERS ADDRESS. 



121 



Or liBt'ning to that martial song 
Which rushes yet my veins along, 
Be-counting deeds of heroes bold. 
In Britain's battles won of old. 

And many a happy night I ween, 

Beneath thi!ne old roof tree Tve seen ; 

For after every logging bee 

The neighbours all would meet in thee ; 

For when the hard day's work was done, 

The logging contests lost and won, 

"We gave ourselves to social mirth, 

And banished sorrow from the hearth : 

And ev'iy happy girl and boy 

Danc'd till thy rafters shook with joy. 

A thousand recollections rush, 

And tears into mine eyeUds gush, 

When thinking of the manly race 

Who first were settled in this place, 

Uncursed with thought, which has destroyed 

Our social joys, and left a void — 

A dreary void within the heart 

Which cannot be supplied with art ! 

And here, upon my wedding day. 

No palace ever look'd so gay ; 

With evergreens and wild flowers dress'd, 

You smil'd a welcome to each guest ; 

And well I mind the joyous cheer 

Which welcom'd home my Mary dear ; 

And how the youngsters danc'd and sung 

Unta thy very raftera rung, 

And all the world to me did seem 

As floating in a blessed dream ! 

And here, while she remained on earth. 
She was the sunlight of thy hearth ; 



122 



' IDYLS Olt TEE DOMINION. 



And here — ^beneath thine old roof tree, 
She nurs'd my children on her knee ; 
There, with the very smile she wore, 
She comes up to me as of yore, 
As if she still would cheer the mate 
She left at last so desolate ; 
And all the children, as of yore, 
Are romping round her on the floor ; 
There Mary ! with her eyes of blue, 
And heart so tender and so true, — 
Who pass'd to brighter worlds away, 
While yet her life was in its May : 
And Charlie, with his face so fair. 
His laige blue eyes and shining hair. 
And ringing lau^h, which seemed to say,- 

" 0, life is aU a summer's day!" 
I hear him singing in the lane — 

" Royal Charlie's come again !" 
How strange ! that he so light and gay. 
Was called the very first away. 

But, ah ! the vision's past and gone ! 
And I am standing all alone 
Upon thy hearth all desolate. 
To sigh o'er the decrees of Fate. 

Thy walla are mouldering to decay, 
Like all things, thou shalt pass away. 
And here, the grass shall flourish green. 
And nought to tell of what has been. 
But sacred thou shalt ever be — 
No hand unfix thine old roof tree ! 
And here I'U often come and sit, 
While evening shadows round me flit, 
Til] as of yore the joyous train 
Are all around me once again. 




THE MAPLE AND THE THISTLE, OR RODERICK 

OF THE HAMMER 

STALWART Scot, a tower I wot, 
Of sinew, bone and muscle, 
Came to our land of forests grand, 

To give our lads a tussle ; 
For, in the land of mountains grand, — 

The lovely land that bore him. 
As champion he still bore the gree, 
And carried all before him. 

So Donald's challenge, far and near. 

The telegraph did carry. 
At length it reached the willing ear 

Of Roderick of Glengarry ; 
Who's of a race that's no disgrace 

Unto the land that bore them. 
Fresh as the vine, straight as the pine, 

Or maple waving o'er them. 

This Roderick Ban has all the man 

In every limb and feature. 
Not strength alone, and nerve and bone. 

But Science, Art and Niature ! 
Tho' Donald is as steeve a chiel 
. As stalks beneath the carry, 
As an athlete, he can't compete 

With Roderick of Glengarry ! 

So Roderick dares him to the test, 

In any style he chooses. 
The canny Scot can not be caught, 

And utterly refuses : 
TTiq reputation on a cast 

Wise Donald will not stake it — 
For Roderick Ban's the better man, 

In any way he'll take it. 



124 



IDTLS OF THE DOMINION. 



For Roderick's feat, it is a treat 

That's worth a long day's going, 
Words cannot ring his mighty swing, — 

It's the sublime of throwing ! 
Transformed into a living wheel, — 

The demon of the centre, 
He gathers power, yet guides the steel 

Where mortal dare not enter. 

As if the whirlwind in its wrath 

Its awful power had lent him, 
He gathers on his whirling path 

A terrible momentum ; 
While every heart is still as death. 

In fearful expectation, 
He hurls it on its sounding path, 

'Mid shouts of admiration. 

E'en while I sing yon mighty swing,— 

My Muse she reels and stammers, 
A8i; a swound she's whirled around^ 

O, he's the King of Hammers ! 
Ah, Donald, at your highest heats. 

You can't compete with Rory, 
Nor throw around your greatest feats 

Yon wild poetic glory : 

Which silences all empty vaunt, 

Defying critic's clamour — 
And henceforth he surnamed shall be 

" Fair Roderick of the Hammer !" 
Long may he live to wear the priize* — 

The golden badge of honour : 
Then join with me in three times three, 

" The Hero and the Donor !" 



* Presented by the Hon. George Brown. 



THE PIC'NIC. 



125 



THE PIC-NIC. 




OW morning fair, with golden hair 
Is through the pine woods streaming ; 
And of a day of mirth and play, 

The youngsters all are dreaming ; 
No sound of slxe salutes the ear ; 

The ox set free from logging ; 
And neighbours all, both great and small^ 
Are to the Pic-nie jogging. 

The girls snd boys how they rejoice, 

So merrily they're driving, 
And far and wide from every side. 

In happy pairs arriving. 
Bill's mounted on his idol there — 

With boughs he has arrayed her, 
And boasts the virtues of " that mare," 

To Dicky, the horse-trader. 

Dick stumps him just to try a heat, 

"Come, bring your scarecrow hither," 
And in such loving converse sweet. 

They trot along together: 
They pass along the ridge of beech, 

And by the hemlocks hoary. 
And leave the noble troop of pines. 

All towering in their glory. 

They reach the grove of maples green. 

Beside the winding river,— 
Still at the song, it sung so long 

To Red Men gone for ever ! 
And it will leap and laugh along 

As gay and happy hearted. 



126 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



And it will sing this very song 
When we too, hdve departed. 

A table's spread beneath the trees — 

Some busily partaking, 
While others swing, or rj^mp and sing, 

All bent on merry-making : 
The old folks talk about the crops ; 

The little boys are larking, 
And with the fair young creatures 

The lads are busy sparking. 

They form a circle round the spring — 

The sparkliDg waters quaffing, 
All poking fun, and ne'er a one 

Of all can keep from laughing 
At am'rous John, stiU sparking on — 

At sixty-two a wanter — 
Or roaring at the great exploits 

Of Bill the mighty hunter. 

His treeing coons, 'neath Autumn moons. 

His fishings and his forays, 
His great affairs with angry bears, 

His terrible wolf stories ; 
When Fred comes with his violin, 

By young and old invited, 
With shouts of joy, the bashful boy 

They cii-cle round, delighted. 

Tho* he is but a backwoods lad — 

A native bom musician. 
What strains he brings from those mere strings ; 

O ! he's a real magician !| 
He plays a quick and merry tune. 

With joy each eye is glancing, 
How be appeals to all their heels, 

And sets them all a dancing. 



THE PIC'NTC, 



127 



Thai mother with her joyous air, 

Her baby how she dandles, 
While Bill and Dick are dancing quick, 

And shouting out like Vandals. 
The chipmonk peeps from out th^ logs, 

And wonders at the flurry, 
And all amazed, with tail upraised, 

Makes tracks in quite a hurry. 

The grey owl opens up his eyes, 

And looks in stupid wonder. 
While, through the wood, the partridge brood 

Are rolling off like thunder ; 
The old coon's in the elm above, 

Pretending that he's sleeping, 
But with one eye, the old boy sly, 

A wondering watch is keeping. ' 

Fred's mood has changed, and in the midst 

Of aU our merry madness. 
He makes us drink, ere we can think. 

The deeper joy of sadness ; 
The youths and maidens hush to hear — 

Tho' 'tis no tale of glory — 
And drink in with a greedy ear 

That simple backwood's story. 



ffis voice he flings among the strings 

That seem with sorrow laden. 
Oh ! hear the sighs, and wailing cries 

Of the poor hapless maiden : 
" Ah, thou art laid in thy death bed, 

Beneath the grassy cover ; 
Why did the tree not fall on me 

Which fell on thee, my lover ? " 



1 



128 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



That wail of woe, so long and low, 

Is in the distance dying, 
And there the rude sons of the wood, 

Are all around him sighing : 
Yes, there they stand, the rude rough band, 

XJntutor'd by the graces, 
As spell-bound there by that wild air, 

Tears streaming down their faces ; 

And while their hearts Mdthin them leap — 

Those hearts unused to weeping, — 
O, what a silence stiU and deep. 

The maples all are keeping ! 
The grove is all a magic hall. 

And he, the necromancer, — 
The master of the wizard spells 

To which our spirits answer. 

Time steals along, Mdth tale and song. 

Until the warning shadow 
Is stretching seen, from maples green. 

And creeping o'er the meadow ; 
Old folks begin to think 'tis time 

That they are homeward going, 
And so they sing a parting rhyme. 

With hearts all overflowing. 



The boys must see the girls to home, 

So they hitch up for starting. 
And merrily they drive along. 

So have a kiss at parting : 
As Dick trots home, that little song 

He can't keep from repeating. 
While Bill declares, *'them backwood airs 

Are good as going to meeting !" 



TO A HUMMING BIRD, 



129 



TO A HUMMING BIRD. 

jlj|«j USH thee, hush thee ! not a word ! 

^f^ 'Tis the lovely hunaLining-bird 

Like a spirit of the air 

Coming from — we know not where I 

Bursting on our raptured sight 

Like a vision of delight — 

Circled in a radiant ring, 

O, thou glory on the wing ! 

Thou'rt no thing of mortal birth, 

Far too beautiful for earth. 

But a thing of happy dreams. 

Rainbow glories, heavenly gleams. 

Something fallen from out the sky, 

To delight man's heaaii and eye, 

In this weary world of ours — 

Wandering spirit of the flowers ! 

Thou'rt a wonder and a joy 
To that happy little boy, 
As, in ecstasy he .stands 
Gazing with uplifted hands ; 
In a rapture of surprise, 
He devours thee with his eyes ; 
Thou shalt haunt him many a day, 
Even when his locks are gray, 
Thoult be a remembered joy — 
Happy, happy little boy ! 

Yonder old man's face the while 
Brightens with a welcome smile, 
Toiling at his daily duty. 
He is startled by thy beauty : 



130 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



Out of all his toils and cares, 
Thou has ta'en him unawares — 
Ta'en him in a moment back, 
O'er a long and weary track. 
Once again, the mountains gray, 
In that dear land far away, 
And his father's humble cot, 
Bound him in a vision float— 
And despite of age and pain, 
He's a little boy again. 

Welcome, Welcome ! happy sprite, 
Welcome ! spirit of delight ; 
Deeper than the joy of wine, 
Or the ancient songs divine ; 
For my spirit thou dost carry 
Back into the realms of Fairy. 
Bound my heart thou com*st to weave 
Things we hope for and believe, 
Things weVe longed for since our birth, 
Things we've never found on earth ; 
how weary would we be, 
Save for visitants like thee ! 



But, like pleasure, lovely thing. 
Thou art ever on the wing ; 
Like the things we wish to stay, 
Thou'rt the first to pass away — 
Flying like our hopes the fleetest. 
Passing like the joy that's sweetest; 
Even now like music's tone, 
Thou'/t a glory come and gone. 



^WEE DAVIE LOWr 



131 



"WEE DAVIE LOW." 

[A boy eight years of age, reaiding at Edmonton, who accidentally 
lost both of his arms' by a reaping machine.] 




I HIS world's a medley of joy and of woe, 

Of wealth and of want, of the high and the low ; 
Some dancing and tripping to mirth's joyous strain. 
While others are writhing in anguish and pain ; 
There are some never taste of misfortune's sad cup, 
Others destined to drink, yea, its very dregs up ! 
A strange panorama still moving along. 
With big hearts and small ones, with right and with wrong. 
With saint and with sinner, with wise man and clown. 
And those up to-day maj*- to-morrow be down ; 
What may be awaiting us, no one can know, — 
The humble exalted, the proud be laid low ; 
We're all God's poor children depend^at alike, 
There are none raised so high that His arm cannot strike. 
And it ought to humble the high haughty brow. 
To think of such sufferers as Wee Davie^Low. 



His life has been blasted, poor boy ! at the start, 

And nothing can help him in science or art ; 

Unarmed, all unfit for the battle of life, 

To him it must be a long terrible strife ; 

The sweet joys of childhood he never can know. 

Its games, and its gambols, he'll have to forego ; 

And then, what a terrible prospect ahead ! 

Through life like a babe to be tended and fed. 

Well might it be written upon his young brow — 

" There have few been afilicted like Wee Davie Low." 



132 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



God gives his unfortunates into our care, 

He gives us our strength, just their burdens to bear; 

When fortune smiles on us, and joys overflow, 

Let us never forget there are others in woe ; 

In the struggle for honour, for power or for pelf. 

Let us still have a few thoughts that soar above self ! 

Of all human beings, they're surely the best, 

Who cheer the forsaken, and shield the oppressed ; 

And Christ was not found 'mong the great and the famed ; 

He went 'mong the poor, the despised, and the maimed ; 

He was found with His great heart and meek humble brow. 

Bringing comfort to sufferers like Wee Davie Low! 

When Death comes at last, as he'll come to us all ! 

And these garments of flesh from the spirit shall faU, 

The question won't be then — " Of what sect were you ?" * 

But, " For my afflicted ones what did ye do ?" 

Did ye soothe the forsaken when hope did depart ? 

Did ye drop the warm balm on the poor bleeding heart ? 

Did ye lighten the burden, and bathe the sad brow 

Of poor little sufferers like Wee Davie Low ? 

This world shall perish, and pass like a breath. 
But our deeds they shall follow us even in death I 
If bad, they shall dog us behind the dark veil. 
And with their reproaches our spirits assail ! 
If good, they're eternal and never can fade, — 
Of them the bright mansions immortal are made ! 
Words spoken in kindness, the t^ar and the sigh, 
Are the gems that adorn the bright mansions on high, 
And charity turns to a wreath on the brow. 
When given to sufferers like Wee Davie Low. 



SPRING. 




OME let us sing ! for the merry Spring 
Is here with her joyous train ; 
And the Uttle school-boy claps his hands with joy 

For the blue-bird's come agaia 
The flowers peep forth,— for the smiUng earth 

Her winter's chain is breaking, — 
And all things fair, in earth and air, 
To life and joy awaking. 



The insects creep from their winter's sleep, 

The air has a mystic humming; 
We hear the beat of unnumbered feet, 

To the joyous revel coming. 
The dark brown thrush leaves the lowly bush, 

And mounts to the maple's branches ; 
With joy he sees the budding trees. 

And into song he launches. 

The squirrel too, makes a great ado. 

For he hears the song so mellow. 
And sing he would, if he only could. 

For he's a happy fellow : 
How nimbly he gets up the tree, 

And leaps among the branches, 
Where proudly he looks down, on me, 

And chatters on his haunches. 



With burning breast, and snowy crest, 
The woodpecker loves to follow, 

And how he raps, and tap, tap, taps 
On every heart that's hollow. 



134 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



The pewee and the chicadee, 

The phoebe, and the swallow, 
Are in the air, on pinions rare, 

Or romping in the faUow. 

And there thex3roW hops to and fro, 

All in his coat so sooty ; 
And hear yon jay ! despite his bray-i- 

O, he's a perfect beauty ! 
He knows it too, as well as you, 

And trims up in all weathers, 
Just see him stride with peacock pride 

Of liis coUar, cap, and feathers. 

Ah, Eobin dear ! you're welcome here, 

Come, tell us where you've been, lad ? . 
How time has past, since we saw you last, 

And what sights you have seen lad. 
And O, ye bands from southern lands. 

Of roving Uttle fellows. 
That duly here, with spring appear. 

Of mirth and joy to teU us : 

Ye're welcome here ! my minstrels dear, — 

My little wildwood rangers, 
That by your star are led afar. 

To sing your songs to strangers : 
Ye*re a jovial lot ! what a happy thought 

Aye with the spring to travel. 
With skies of blue, the whole year through. 

And a never ending revel ! 



Ye come to cheer our spirits here, 
For there's a charm about you : 

And oh I to me, the woods would be 
A dreary waste without you. 



GOING TO THE BUSH, 



135 




GOING TO THE BUSH. 



HIS settlement is getting old. 
And just a leettle crowdy ; 
m not loaf round this worn out ground, 

Like any idle rowdy. 
There's few like me, can fell a tree, 

I'm bully at the axe ; 
I'm twenty-one, its time dad's son 
Was up and making tracks. 

Dad says, that when he's dead and gone, 

I'll have this farm of his'n, 
K I'll but stay, and work away. 

Since market stufb have risen. 
That's too onsartain, and besides 

rU never wish him dead,— 
Not fond of pelf — ^yet for myself 

I want to go a-head. 

m chop a homestead o' my own, 

The first thing that I'll do, 
And raise a shanty right away, 

With room enough for two. 
I'll hunt me up some neighbour gal — 

For I wont live alone ; 
And there in joy, without alloy. 

Raise chickens o' my own. 

Now, let me see — ^who will it be, 

To Vhom I'll give the call ? 
I'll surely find one to my mind, 

When I've the pick of all I 



136 



IDYLS OF THE BOMIJiJOJf. 



I'm a six-footer in my socks — 
Tho* l^nned a leetle yeller j 

Yet after all, what gals would call, 
A rather handsom' feller. 



Well, there's that Buckley gal — but she's 

Too slow upon her feet ; 
She'd be no use, back in the bush. 

With nothing but conceit. 
There's Laura Larkings — she won't do, 
. For she's both cross and cranky ; 
I know she'd shirk all kinds of work, 

Like any down-east Yankee. 

There's Mary Ann, smart gal I swan ! 

And good too, I consider ; 
But, then you see, it cannot be, 

'Cause I won't have a widder. 
And there is Sal, a tidy gal ! 

A favorite o' my mother's; 
But then I would be eaten up, 

With all her loafing brothers. 

And there's the Reeve's young daughter too, 

That gal's got quite a^Tected ! 
And O, what airs she always wears, 

Since her dad was elected. 
And how she squalls, at what she calls 

" Her sacred songs so charming ;" 
But, O my stars ! them heavenly airs 

Are really quite alarming. 

There's Liz — ^but she won't do for me ! 

For she's her mother's daughter. 
Whose tongue has kept this settlement 

For years in boiling water. 



GOING TO THE BUSK 



137 



A handsom' gal tho' she may be — 
And very few are smarter — 

We went to school, but could'nt pull, 
For she's a regular Tarter. 

There's Nancy Ann, the gal I swan ! 

Jist laughing ripe, and mellor \ 
A perfect brick ! she'll do right slick ! 

Lord, Pm a lucky feller. 
I mind, when old schoolmaster frowned. 

And shook the blue'beech o'er me, 
She took my part, and bless her heart ! 

She lied like sixty for me. 

Yes, Nan shall be the gal for me ! 

A clever-handed gal ! 
I'll get her too, with small ado, 

I'm certain sure I shall. 
Then here's for Nan ! she's mine I syran ! 

And we'll have no delaying , 
Hitched right away ! that's what I say ! 

And start the first o' sleighing. 



<^..,vi< • ■^ '»'\/\y vv/\.'\rvr\,'v'vr\/v/vj>j' 




OLD HOSS. 




OU educated folks, no doubt, 
At spinning yams are bosses ; 
Well, for some trade, each man is made, 

Fm number one at bosses. 
I'm known all o'er tbe township, sir, 

By hired hand and boss ; 
As I go by, the children cry, — 
"There goes the Great Old Hoss I" 



I often wonder — and to know 

I'm really at a loss — 
What kind o' soul a man can have. 

That does'nt love a hosa 
I love the critters every one. 

And that's the way, you see. 
That every critter 'neath the sun, 

A liking has for me. 

If ever I gets badly riled, 

If ever I gets cross — 
*Tis when I see brutality 

Inflicted on a hoss. 
They knows it too, as well as you ; 

And every hoss I meet. 
Lor bless your beart ! they nods to mo, 

As I goes down the street. 

A hoss sir, has ideas sir ! 

And if you truly love him. 
And educate him as you ought, 

Tou'U make a christian of him. 



t 



OLD BOSS, 



139 



A boss sir, will be good or bad, 
It's all in how you breaj^ him ; 

He'U be a christian or a brute, 
Just as youVe sense to make him. 

For be we either man or boss, 

We've all an inborn sin : 
And what is Christianity ? 

But just a breaking in. 
Now, I gives all my bosses, sir, 

A christian education ; 
And nar a one but has some sense 

Of moral obligation. 

You see, the first thing that I does, 

I lets them know I'm boss, 
All in love too ! that's how I do, — 

A woman or a boss. 
A boss knows what a feller is, 

Whene'er he meets his eyes ; 
And there he'll take, and no mistake ! 

His measure and his size. 



He knows a man, that i6 a man, 

And feels that he's his master ; 
Detects a knave, or coward slave. 

No woman does it faster ! 
He hates them blust'ring bullies, sir. 

Them fellows that are gross ; 
Be good yourself, if you would be 

Bespected by a boss ! 

No doubt at times, as 'mong ourselves, 

You'll come across a fool, 
He'U try your temper fearfully, 

But you must just keep cool. 



140 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



IVe had some heart-breaks in my time — 

Some awful stupid asses ! 
To make them moral animals^ 

All human skill surpasses. 

For you may treat them as you may, 

They're crooked as a fence ; 
In man or hoss, the want o' wants, 

Is want o' common sense ! 
But really in a common way, 

I'm very seldom beat ; 
And as I say, thanked every day. 

When walking down the street. 



•>.Ay>/V/\^'V\AA/\/Vrv/VA/\.'\.'\AAAyV/- 




YOUNG BOSS. 




OW here's a boss, that is a hoss I 
Most folks are of opinion, 
There isn't such another hoss 
In all our great Dominion. 
See, how he paces like a prince ! 
He's willing, and no schemer ; 
And at a race, or trotting pace, 
I tell you, he's a screamer ! 



To see me driving past the mail, 

To reach the railway station. 
And leaving it both head and tail, — 

I tell ye, it's a caution. ^ 
And them old farmers, with their wheat. 

They're to the market teaming ; 
How hopefully they jog along. 

Of mighty prices dreaming ! 

I like to see them old coons riled — 

They're always plaguey bosses ! 
You may insult them if you will — 

But do'nt insult their bosses. 
I drives up quietly behind, • 

And if there's aught like sleighing — 
I gives the whip, and like a ship, 

I passes them hurrahing ! 



A mighty swell came out from town. 
And boasted, O, tarnation ! — 

His mare would trot the township down, 
And gallop all creation. 



142 



\ 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION, 



And hotr he swaggered all around ; 

Stumped everyone about him ; 
Thinks I, the clown, 1*11 do him brown ! 

I'll take the conceit out him. 

We tabrd down a x a-piece, 

And started oflF like thunder; 
Past him I flew, with small ado, 

Which made the critter wonder. 
And there the miller's daughter stood, 

And how she laughed, O — cricky ! 
As she would bust, to see me fust, 

And roared out, " well done Dickie 1" 



A gal so sensible as Sal, 

You'll seldom come across, sir ; — 
For ignorant's the most o' gals ; 

But well she knows a hoss, sir. 
And a tarnation handsom' gal — 

A regular romping filly ; 
And all the other gals in town, 

Beside her look so silly. 

» 

There's something in her, when she's rigg'd 

For " Sunday go to meeting ;" 
I feels abash'd, for — be-dashed — 

She sets my heart a-beatin'. 
And she knows how to hold the reins — 

Tho' Dandy's against her striving; 
You have to see't, it's so complete, 

O Lord, to see her driviug ! 

With saddle, or without it, she 

Can ride a hoss quite handy ; 
I tell ye it's a sight to see 

Her mounted upon Dandy. 



YOUNG BOSS. 



143 



We two would work ia harness well, 
And that I often tell her ; ' 

And faith^ I think, she likes it weU, 
She loves a smart young feller. 



Them fools of fellers up the town, 
They need not round her slaver—. 

For I've it fixed for April next, 
And Pm the boy will have her ! 



144 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



THE DEATH OF THE OX. 




ND thou art gone, my poor dumb Mend 1 thy troubles 
all are past ; 

A faithful friend thou wert indeed, e*en to the very last ! 
And thou wert the prop of my house, my children's pride 

and pet, — 
Who now will help to free me from this weary load of debt ? 



Here, single-handed, in the bush I battled on for years. 
My heart sometimes buoyed up with hope, sometimes bowed 

down with fears. 
I had misfortunes not a few, e'en from the very first ! 
But take them altogether, " Bright," thy death's the very 

worst ! 

My great ambition's always been, to owe no man a cent ; 
To compass that, by honest toil, my every nerve I've bent ; 
Not for proud Independence ! no, of w;hich the poets sing, 
But for the very love of Right — ^the justice of the thing. 

To clear accouiits within the year, I saw my way so plain — 
But losing thee, it throws me back, God knows, how far 

again ! 
Just when I thought within my grasp, I had success secure. 
Here comes Misfortune back again, resolved to keep me 

poor! 



I've no one to depend upon, to do my teaming now 1 
And there's ten acres to be logged ! the fallow all to plough ! 
How can I ever clear the land — how can I drag the wheat ? 
How can I keep my credit clear — ^how can my children eat ? 



THE DEATH OF THE OX. 



145 



O, nothing in the shape of work, was e'er a scare to thee ! 
Thou wert the hero of the field, at every logging bee ! 
The drags, they might be double length, the maples monster 

thick. 
Then give thee but a " rolling hitch," and ofi* they went so 

slick. 

'Twas but a tug,- — the monsters seem'd to thee as light's a 

pin; 
And how you wheeled them round about, and how you 

jerked them in ; ' 

The very crookedest of all, would hardly make thee strain, 
And from the teamsters, every one, fresh laurels thou didst 

gain. 

A gentleness, a beauty, too, within thine eye did dwell ! 
It seemed to me as beautiful as eye of the gazelle ! 
And, how thy hide of tawny- white lost every shade of dun, ' 
And its brown streaks to velvet changed, all in the sum- 
mer's sun. 



And through the Indian Summer too, transfigured thou 

didst seem, 
A great dumb giant looking through her hazy amber beam ! 
And how you loved in Spring-time oft, to browse beside the 

creek — 
When all the air was laden with the odour of the leek. 



How you would stand and ruminate, like sage in thought- 
ful mood ; . 

Or listen to the children's shout, far in the leafy wood, — 

While they were hunting fiowery spots, where Spring had 
newly been, — 

Or gathering lilies, red and white, beneath the maples green ; 



146 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



Or, far beneath the tamarac's shade — ^where many a hem- 
lock leans 

Above the salt-licks^ in the dell, fringed with the ever- 
greens ; — 

Or climbing the o'erhanging bank, or swinging from the 
tree; 

Or starting with their ringing shout, in search, old friend, of 
thee ! 

And laden with the spoils of Spring, they'd follow up thy 

track, 
And wreath thy horns superb with flowers, and mount upon 

thy back ; 
And how you shook your tawny sides, in absolute delight ; 
And I have stood, and looked unseen, in rapture on the 

sight. 

It seemed a miracle to me — for thou wert never broke — 

How willingly you always came, and bowed beneath the 
yoke ; 

And when Buck — as he sometimes did — would take a stub- 
bom fit. 

Then, in some language of thine own, you coaxed him to 
submit. 

It's clear to me, that thoii hadst got some kind of moral 

sense, — 
For never didst thou sneak, and steal, nor ever break a 

fence, — 
And when Buck would leap over one, for he was ne'er 

reclaimed. 
How hurriedly you stole away, as perfectly ashamed ! 



And thou wert so sagacious too, so sensible and shrewd. 
And every word I said to thee, was ftilly understood. 



TEE DEATH OF THE OX. 



147 



No whip was e'er laid on thy back, nor blue-beech, never 

never ! 
While slaves and tyrants wrought and fought, we lived in 

peace together. 

I've no doubt, but you learned some things, my poor old 

friend from me, 
And many a silent lesson too, I also got from thee ; 
I ne'er could think thou wert a brute, but just a silent 

brother I 
And sure am I, to fill'thy place I'll never get another ! 



-^•>."W^/^/>.'V^^v^/v^yv^>^,'^/^,'^.•^/^r^ 



1 



148 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION, 



OCTOBER 




OT in russet, sad and sober, 
Com'st thou here, beloved October, 

As in Europe Old ; 
Not with aspect wan and hoary. 
But array'd in robes of glory, 

Purple, green, and gold. 
Over continent and sea. 
To hold the full year s jubilee, 

Thou again hast come, — 
Borne on thine own fairy pinion, 
To our dear beloved Dominion, 

Our green forest home ! 



O ye, who live in cities vast, 
Aside your weary ledgers cast, 

Tho' 'twere but for an hour ; 
come and see this magic sight — 
This revel of all colours bright— 

This gold and purple shower ! 
come and see the great arcades. 
And catch the glory ere it fades, — 

Come through no sense of duty : 
But see with open heart' and eye. 
This glory underneath the sky,-7 

This miracle of beauty ! 



See how Uie great old forest vies 
With all the glory of the skies, 
In streaks without a name ; 
And leagues on leagues of scarlet spires, 



OCTOBER, 



U9 



And temples lit with crimson fires, 

And palaces of flame ! 
And domes on domes that gleam afar, 
Through many a gold and crimson bar, 

With azure overhead ; 
While forts, with towers on towers arise. 
As if they meant to scale the skies, 

With banner bloody red. , 

Here, orange groves that seem asleep, 
There, stately avenues that sweep* 

To where the land declines ; 
There starting up in proud array — 
With helmets flashing to the day — 

Troop upon troop of pines. 
Here, evergreens that have withdrawn. 
And hang around the open lawn, 

With shadows creeping back; 
While yonder girdl'd hemlocks run 
Like fiery serpents to the sun, 

Upon their gleaming track. 

And in the distance far apart. 
As if to shame man s proudest art, 

Cathedral ai:ches spread ; 
While yonder ancient elm has caught 
A glory 'yond the reach of thought, 

Upon his hoary head. 
But every object, far and wide — 
The very air is glorified — 

A perfect dream of bliss ! 
Earth's greatest painters never could — 
Nor poet in inspired mood — 

Imagine aught like this. 

O ! what are all ambition's gains ? 
What matters it who rules or reigns 



150 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



While I have standing here! 
Gleams of unutterable things, 
The work of the great King of Kings ! 

God of the full crown'd year ! 
October ! thou'rt a marvellous sight, 
And with a rapture of delight, 

We hail thy gorgeous pinion ; 
To elevate our hearts thou*rt here, 
To bind us with a tie more dear. 

To our beloved Dominion ! 



^y\/VVAA/\A/V.'V/W/N/\/V/N/V\/VW 



INDIAN SUMMER, 



151 




INDIAN SUMMER . 

ELCOME ! welcome ! Indian Summer, 
Welcome ! thou the latest comer 

To the wood and chase ; 
Thee we hail with deeper gladness, 
Even for the tinge of sadness, 

That is in thy face. 
Young October's reign was splendid. 
Old, and sear, her glory's ended. 

And to gild her fall, 
Thou descend'st on nature hoary, 
With a spiritual glory. 

That surpasseth aU : 
A glory that no other land 
Has ever seen, howe'er so grand 

Its lakes or woods might be — -. 
A glory even bards of old 
Were not permitted to behold. 

In climes beyond the sea. 

Down from the blue the sun has driven, 
And stands between the earth and heaven. 

In robes of smouldering flame. 
A smoking cloud before him hung, 
A mystic veil, for which no tongue 

Of earth can find a name ; 
And o'er him bends the vault of blue, 
With shadowy fa^es looking through 

The azure deep profound ; 
The stillness of eternity, — 
A glory and a mystery, 

Encompass him around. 



l52 



IDYLS OF TEE DOMINION, 



The air is thick with golden haze, 
The woods are in a dreamy maze. 

The earth enchanted seems ; 
Have we not left the realms of care, 
And entered in the regions fair 

We see in blissful dreams ? 



O, what a sacred stillness broods 
Above the awfiil solitudes ! 

Peace hangs with dove-like mien ; 
She's on the earth, she's in the air, 
O, she is brooding everywhere- 
Sole spirit of the scene ! 
^nd yonder youths and maidens seem, 
As moving in a heavenly dream, 

Through regions rich and rare; 
Have not their very garments caught 
A tone of spiritual thought, 

A still, a sabbath air ! 
Yon cabins by the forest si^e. 
Are all transformed and glorified ! 

O, surely grief and care, 
And poverty with strife and din, 
Nor anything like vulgar sin — 
Can never enter there ! 

The ox fet loose to roam at will 
Is lying by the water still ; 

And on yon spot of green, 
The very herd forget to graze, 
And look in wonder and amaze, 

Upon the mystic scene. 
And yonder Lake Ontario lies. 
As if that wonder and surprise 

Had hushed her heaving breast — 
And laj^s there with her awful eye 
Fixed on the quiet of the sky, 



INDIAN SUMMER, 



163 



Like passion soothed to rest, 
Yon very maple feels the hush — ^ 
That trance of wonder, that doth rush 

Through nature everywhere ; 
And meek and saint-like, there she stands 
With upturned eye and folded hands, 

As if in silent prayer. 

Indian Summer, there's in thee 
A stillness, a serenity — 

A spirit pure and holy, 
Which makes October's gorgeous train, 
Seem but a pageant light and vain, 

Untouched by melancholy ! 
But who can paint the deep serene — 
The holy stillness of thy mien — 

The calm that's in thy face. 
Which make us feel, despite of strife, 
And all the turmoil of our life — 

Earth is a holy place. 
Here, in the woods, we'll talk with thee, 
Here, in thy forest sanctuary 

We'll learn thy simple lore ; 
And neither poverty nor pain. 
The strife of tongues, the thirst for gain, 

Shall ever vex us more. 



154 



IBYLS OF TEE DOMINION, 



HUKRAH FOR THE NEW DOMINION. 



C>i. 



(i]T/®ET others raise the song, in praise 
J=B-/ Of lands renowned in story ; 



The land for me, of the maple tree, 
And the pine, in all his glory ! 

Hurrah ! for the grand old forest land, 
Wl^ere Freedom spreads her pinion ; 

Hurrah ! with me, for the maple tree, 
Hurrah ! for the New Dominion ! 

Be her's the light, and her's the might. 

Which Libertj'- engenders : 
Sons of the free, come join with me— 

Hurrah ! for her defenders. 

And be their fame in loud acclaim — 
In grateful songs ascending ; 

The fame of those, who met her foes, 
And died, her soil defending. 

Hurrah ! for the grand old forest land 
Where freedom spreads her pinion ; 

Hurrah i! with me, for the maple tree. 
Hurrah ! for the New Dominion ! 



-'V^-'^ >^./^w>'^ *■> , 'V^'v/ 



ACRES OF YOUR OWN. 



ACRES OF YOUR OWN. 




ERE'S the road to indepeadence. 
Who would bow and dance attend 
Who with e'er a spark of pride, 
While the bush is wild and wide, 
Would be but a hanger-on, 
Begging favours from a throne ; 
While beneath yon smiUng sun. 

Farms, by labour, can be won. 

Up ! be stirring, be aUve, 

Get upon a farm and thrive ! 

He's a king'upon a throne. 

Who has acres of his own ! 



Tho' the cabia's walls are bare, 
What of that; if love is there ? 
What, although your back is bent. 
There are none to hound for rent ; 
What, tho' you must chop and plough. 
None dare ask, " What doest thou ?" 
What, tho' homespun be your coat. 
Kings might envy you your lot. 
Up ! be stirring, be alive. 
Get upon a farm and thrive ! 
He's a king upon a throne, 
Who has acres of his own I 

Honest labour thou would'st shirk — 
Thou art far too good to work ; 
Such gentility's a fudge. 
True men all must toil and drudge. 



156 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



Nature^s true Nobility 
Scorns such mock gentility ; 
, Fools but talk of blood and birth — 
Ev*ry man must prove his worth. 
Up ! be stirring, be alive, 
Get upon a farm and thrive ! 
He's a king upon a throne, 
Who has acres of his own ! 



-J o-y \./%/>y\/x W'v/V/ \/ \j \, -^j \j \j \j \j \j \: s* 



WHIP-POOR-WILL. 




HERE is a lonely spirit, 

Which wanders through the wood, 
And tells its mournful story, 

In every solitude. 
It comes abroad at eventide, 
And hangs beside the rill, 
And murmurs to the passer by — 
" Whip-poor-wilL" 



0, 'tis a hapless spirit, 

In likeness of a bird ! 
A grief, that cannot utter 

Another woful word. 
A soul that seeks for sympathy, 

A woe that won't be still ; 
A wandering sorrow murmuring — 

"Whip-poor-wiU!" 



ONTARIO. 



157 



ONTARIO. 




„ FAR away from my forest home, 

In the land of the stranger I must roam ; 
And sigh amid flowers and traiUng vines, 
For mine own rude land of lakes and pines. 
And I long — O, how I long to be 
In mine own Dominion of the free — 

Ontario ! Ontario ! 
In mine own Dominion of the free — 

Ontario ! 



The old school-house, is it standing still ? 
Do the pines still hang o'er the old saw-mill ! 
Is the maple tree still fresh and green, 
That over our old log-house doth lean ? 
Ah ! *back to the^i all, I fain would be 
In mine own Dominion of the free — 

Ontario ! Ontario ! 
In mine own Dominion of the free — 

Ontario! 



And does the blue-bird, in the Spring 

Gome to it, as of old, to sing ? 

And 'mong its branches build her nest. 

And rear its young ones in its breast ? 

O, had I wings like her, I*d flee 

To mine own Dominion of the free— 

Ontario ! Ontario ! 
To mine own Dominion of the free- 
Ontario ! 



158 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



And what, tho' many do forget, 
There's still one there that loves me yet ! 
I see her form, I see her face — 
I hear her voice in every place ! 
And backward still, she beckons m^ 
To mine own Dominion of the free — 

Ontario ! Ontario ! 
To mine own Domii^ion of the -free — 

Ontario ! 

And stiD, as a knock comes- to the door, 
Tho' disappointed ten times o'er. 
She runs — ^but to find her hopes are vain, 
Of her wand'ring Billy back again : 
And back to her breast, I fain would flee, 
And mine own Dominion of the free — 

Ontario ! Ontario ! 
And mine own Dominion of the free — 

Ontario ! 



] 



V/^y*V^^"»,,*^ '*^'> >^ ,"N,.*^ ~ 



THE MAPLE TREE. 



159 



THE MAPLE TREE. 




MAPLE tree, O, Maple tree, 
O, thou'rt a pride and joy to me : 
Qf all trees of the forest green, 
There's none compares with thee I ween ; 
And long may you stand so green and grand, 
The joy and pride of our happy land — 

0, Maple tree ! 



And all the birds, they love thee best, 

And sing the sweetest in thy breast ; 

And there's no shade, nor spreading tree, 

The free-foot rovers love like thee : 

And long may you stand, so green and grand, 

The pride and joy of our happy land — 

• 0, Maple tree ! 



And in the merry month of Spring, 

Ere yet the birds begin to sing, 

O, how the school-boy shouts to see 

The drops of nectar fall from thee ! 

And long may you stand, so green and grand. 

The pride and joy of our happy land — 

O, Maple tree ! 



^ 



And maidens, on their bridal morn. 

With boughs the festal halls adorn — 

And children clap their hands to see — 

And old men love the maple tree ; 

And long may you stand, so green and grand. 

The pride and joy of our happy land — 

0, Maple tree ! 




And all our sons, whfere'er they roam, 

Still twine thy name with thoughts of home ; 

Tho' far away from thee I ween, 

Yet memory keeps thy branches green ! 

And long may you stand, so green and grand, 

The pride and joy of our happy land— 

O, Maple tree ! 



■v,-v ^.--^ rv-^- ■ 



AUTUMN LEAVES. 




'HE great woods of Autumn are solemn and sere, 
Like dead generations, the leaves disappear ; 
And the great winds are sighing, " Ye tarry not here," 
Yea, like the leaves we are treading upon. 
Here, we are now, and to-morrow we're blown 
Into the vast and the vacant unknown — 

Gone ! Gone ! 

Where we have come from, or whither we go — 
Ah ! not the wisest of mortals can know ; 
Air is a mystery mingled with woe ! 
Are we but shadows of doubt and of fear. 
Doomed for a moment to grope about here. 
Then in the blackness for aye disappear ? 

Oh, dear I 

Do we but dream of a future sublime ? 
Are we but creatures of ashes and slime? 
Creatures begotten, and swallowed by Time ! 
Never, ah, never ! to merge in the mom, 
Life, but a mockery devils might scorn ! — 
Better, far better, we ne'er had been bom, 

Forlorn I 



BOBOLINK. 



161 




BOBOLINK. 

ERRY mad-cap on the tree, 
Who so happy are as thee ; 
Is there aught so full of fun, 
Half so happy *neath the sun. 
With thy merry whiskodink — 

Bobolink ! Bobolink ! 

With thy mates, such merry meetings, 
Such queer jokes and funny greetings ; 
O, such running and such chasing, 
O, such banter and grimacing, 
Thou'rt the wag of wags the pink — 

Bobolink ! Bobolink ! 

How you tumble ^mong the hay. 
Romping all the summer's day ; 
Now upon the wing all over, 
In and out among the clover — 
Far too happy e*er to think — 

Bobolink ! Bobolink ! 

Now thou'rt on the apple tree, 
Crying, " Listen unto me f 
Now, upon the mossy banks. 
Where thou cuttest up such pranks — 
One would swear thou wert in drink — 

Bobolink ! Bobolink ! 

Nothing canst thou know of sorrow, 
As to-day, shall be to-morrow ; 
Never dost thou dream of sadness — 
All thy life a merry madness, 
Never may thy spirits sink- 
Bobolink! Bobolink! 



162 . IDYLS OF THE DOMINION, 




TO AN INDIAN SKULL. 

ND art thou come to this at last, 
Great Sachem of the forest vast ! 
E'en thou who wert so tall in stature, 
And modelled in the pride of Nature ; 
High as tRe deer, you bore your head ; 
Swift as the roebuck was thy tread ; 
Thine eye, bright as the orb of day — 
In battle a consumihg ray ! 
Tradition links thy name with fear, 
And strong men hold their breath to hear 
What mighty feats by thee were done — 
The battles by thy strong arm won ! 
The glory of thy tribe wert thou — 
But — where is all thy glory now ? 
Where are those orbs, and where that tongue, 
On which commanding accents hung ! 
Canst thou do nought but grin and stare 
Through hollow sockets — the worms' lair ' 
And toothless gums, all gaping there ! 

Ah ! Where's that heart that did imbibe 
The wild traditions of thy tribe ? 
Oft did the song of bards inspire. 
And set thy very soul on fire, 
'Till all thy wild and savage blood 
Was rushing like a roaring flood ; 
And all the wrongs heaped on thy race, 
Leapt up like demons in thy face ; 
And rushing down upon the plain. 
You raised the war-whoop once again. 
And stood among your heaps of slain ! 



TO AN INDIAN SKULL. 



163 



What, tho' to thee, there did belong 
A savage sense of right and wrong ! 
In that-^how like thou wert indeed. 
To those who boast a better creed : 
Repaid thy wrongs with blood and gall, 
And triumphed in thy rival's fall. 
Like any Christian of us all. 

Like me, thou hadst thy hopes and fears ; 
Like me, thou hadst thy smiles and tears ; 
Felt Winter's cold, and Summer's heat ; 
Didst hunger, and had weary feet ; 
Wert warmed by kindness, chilled by hate ; 
Had enemies, like all the great ! 
Tho' thou wert no type of the dove. 
Yet, thou hadst to have one to love 1 
O, ,thy Wenonah, she was fair, 
And dark as midnight was her hair ! 
Thy wigwam was a sacred place. 
And dear to thee, thj^ dusky race. 
Ah, yes ! thy savage imps were dear, 
And they would climb thy knees, to hear, 
And drink thy tales with greedy ear ! 



What, tho' a wild rude life was thine. 
Thou still hadst gleams of the divine — 
A sense of something undefined— 
A Presence — ^an Almighty mind. 
Which guides the planets,' rocks the sea. 
And through the desert guided thee. 
The dark woods, all around thee spread ; 
The leafy curtain overhead ; 
The great old thunder-stricken pine, 
And the cathedral elms divine ; 
The dismal swamp, the hemlock hoar ; 
Niagara's everlasting roar ; 




The viewless winds which rushed to wake 
The spirit of Ontario's lake ; 
Did not its mighty anthems roll 
Through all the caverns of thy soul, 
And thrill thee with a sense sublime, 
With gleams of that eternal clime 
Which stretches over Death and Time ! 

And oft, like me, thou'dst ask to know, 
" Whence came we, whither do we go ?" 
A marvel, ah, poor soul ! to thee. 
As it has ever been to me. 
From the unknown, we issued out. 
With mystery compassed round about; 
Each with his burden on his back, 
To follow in the destined track. 
With weary feet, to toil and plod 
^ Through nature, back to nature's God. 
Mine was the cultivated plain. 
And thine the leafy green domain ; 
Thine was a rude unvarnished shrine. 
In form thy idols were not mine ; 
But ah, mine were as strange to thee. 
As thine, my brother, were to me ! 
And yet they differed but in name. 
And were, in truth, the very same. 

Dreams of the hunting fields were thine — 
What better are thcfee dreams of mine ? 
Ah, my Red brother ! were not we 
By accident compelled to be 
Christian or savage.? We indeed 
Alike inherited a creed. 
We had no choice what we should be ; 
Race, country, creed, were forced on thee — 
Red brother, as they were on me ! 



TO AN INDIAN SKULL. 



165 



Then, why should I have loved tliee less, 
Or closed my heart to thy distress, 
Red rover of the wilderness ! 

Soon must we go, as thou hast gone 

Away, back to the great unknown, 

Where, elevated above doubt. 

We, too, will find the secret out. 

Then mayest thou th' uneducated, 

Be found the least contaminated — 

From civilization's trammels free. 

Who knows, poor soul, but thou mayest be 

Exalted higher far than we. 



^."'•~./\,-.~'_^ 



16C 



IDYLS OF THE DOMINION. 




GRANDMOTHER'S STORY TO HER GRAND- 
CHHiDREN ; OR THE EVIL EYE. 

IS forty years and upwards, 
Since first we settled here, 
AU in the trackless forest. 

With not a neighbour near ; 
And all through Jenny Thompson — 

For Jenny wished me ill, 
For there be wishes, darUngs, 
That have the power to kill ! 

For oh ! if e'er that Satan 

Was in a thing of clay, 
He was in Jenny Thompson, 

Upon my wedding-day. 
When I stood up with Jamie, 

There stood the wicked elf. 
Who tried to put between us. 

And get him for herself. 

And with her eyes she cursed me — 



Her eyes that burned with spite ! 
I felt them darting through me, 

I could have cried with fright. 
When I tpld Jamie of it, 

He only smiled at me — 
For the ways of wicked women. 

He never yet could see. 

I lived in terror of her. 
But Jamie he would say — 
*' Freets follow them that fear them"- 
And kissed my tears away. 



GRANDMOTHERS STORY. 



167 



But still, for all his banter, 
I lived in dread and fear ; 

And often I advised him 
To come and settle here. 

I dreaded the wild ocean, 

I never liked to roam. 
But then, along with Jamie, 

The desert were a home. 
And we had peace and comfort — 

Tho' not unmixed with ill — 
And but for Jenny Thompson, 

Might have been happy still. 

Twas in the depth of Winter — 

m nfe'er forget the day, 
The road^ were badly drifted. 

The sky a sheet of gray ! 
When Jamie left that morning. 

There fell on me a fear ; 
The spirit knows, my darlings, 

When evil things are near ! 

And while that I was sitting, 

And knitting all alone, 
As plainly as you hear me — 

I heard a heavy groan : 
I looked up from my knitting — 

Lord, may we all have grace ! — 
And there stood Jenny Thompson, 

A laughing in my face. 



And while I gazed upon her. 
They bore my love to me- 



For in the woods he perished 
By the falling of a tree. 



168 



JBYLS OF THE DOMINION. 



Oh ! I was quite distracted — 
Could neither weep nor pray, 

For there stood Jenny Thompson, 
And there my Jamie lay ! 

I bound his wounds so ghastly, 

And smoothed his yeUow hair, 
And watched all night beside him, 

And Jenny standing there : — 
Arrayed as for a marriage, 

In bridal robes of green, 
Her evil eye upon me — 

The body stretched between ! 

Through all that awful midnight, 

There lay the silent dead. 
And there we two were watching, 

And not a word was said. 
The terror has not left me — 

Mine eyes are nearly blind. 
And there are times, I'm thinking, 

I'm hardly in my mind. 

And ever since — ^my darlings, — 

That woful night and day, 
I wish I were with Jamie, — 

I long to be away! 
And aU through Jenny Thompson- 

For Jenny wished us ill ; 
And there be wishes — darlings — 

That have the power to kill ! 



1 



INSCBIBBD 
TO 

GEOEGE R. GOLDIE, ESQ., 

"MAPLKS," CHATHAM. 




Miscellaneous Scottish Pieces. 



HALLOWE'EN. 




RECITED BEFOBE THE CAXBDONIAN SOCIETY, 
MONTREAL, ON HALLOWE'EX. 



VERYBODY kens that spirits 

Walk abroad on Hallowe'en; 
And the little playful fairies 

Hold their revels on the green. 
Everybody kens they're partial 

To auld Scotland's bonnie glens ; 
Not a Untie o' the valley 

Ilka green nook better kens. 



Mony a shepherd at the gloamin' 

Scarcely can believe his e'en, 
Coming unawares upon them, 

Dancing in their doublets green ; 
Singin' sangs, and drinkin' dew-drops 

Out o' cowslip cups sae pale ; 
Or a' riding on the moonbeams 

Doun the dingle and the dale. 



172 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES 



Mony a chuffjr-cheekit laddie 

They hae wiled by birken shaw ; 
Mony, a mony a bonnie bairnie, 

On that nicht they've charmed awa', 
Weel it's kent they watch o'er lovers, 

A' their hearts to them are seen ; 
A' their quarrels and their matches, 

They mak' up on Hallowe'en. 

Weel it's kent they're faithfu' ever 

To the genius o' our laun, 
And in a' her cares and troubles 

Send her aye a helpin' haun ; 
Them it is, should Donald waver, 

Mid the battle's loudest din, 
That keep yelling through the bagpipes, 

Till he gars the foeman rin. 

'Tis frae them the Scottish minstrels 

Learn sae weel their melting art, 
Get the magic words that open 

A' the fountains o' the heart. 
Nane can dance our Gillie Galium, 

Sing our Scottish sangs, I ween. 
Saving them wha've tippl't wi' them 

On the dews o' Hallowe'en, 

On that nicht, there's nae denyin' 't ! 

Mony a Scot, as weel's mysel', 
Hae had moonlicht dealings wi' them, 

Gin the truth they like to telL 
Weel, ae Hallowe'en at gloamin', 

Dro'VFsy sleep bow'd doun mine e'e ; 
And, to my surprise,. I wauken'd 

Daundering on the midnicht lea. 



HALLOWE'EN, 



173 



There the big horned mune was glowrin' 

Doun upon me frae the sky, 
And the wee-bit stars a* tremblin' 

Like the tears in beauty's eye ; 
Suddenly I heard a rustle 

Down beside the lonely spring ; 
Gliff t was I, nae doubt, to see there 

' Elves and fairies in a ring/ 



There they were, a sittin' singin', 

Blithely on the velvet green ; 
And the owercome o' the sang was 

' Hey for Scotland's Hallowe'en !' 
Frae their lips ilk word was fa'in' 

Sweet as ony dew'y gem ; — 
*Kennedy himsel' ne'er warbl'd 

Scotia's ballads like to them. 



In the midst a hoary matron, 

Wi' auld Scotland's spinning-wheel — 
" Scotland's auld respected Mither" — 

Oh, I kent her face fu' weel ! 
Gazing on her rugged features. 

What unutterable things 
Stirr'd my spirit, while above me 

Flapt innumerable wings. 

Shades of ancient Scottish worthies. 

Heroes with the laurel crowned. 
Martyrs, patriots and prophets. 

Saints and sages, hover'd round ; 
All the preachers and the poets, 

All the spirits great indeed 
Wha hae twin'd a wreath immortal 

Round our puir auld Mither's heid. 




•* ^ ^ 



'.- - - - ' 



174 MISOMLLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES, 

A! the stalwart chiels wha perish'd — 

Perish'd ! no, they never dee ! 
Scotland, 'neath thy bluidy banner, 

Wha lay doun their lives for thee. 
Lovingly she gazed upon them, 

Proudly 'claimed them for her sons ; 
And, with all a mother's fondness, 

Called them her " immortal ones." 

Then she turned, as to her children, 

Exil*d far across the sea. 
Saying, " Lads and bonnie lasses. 

That I nurs'd upon my knee, 
Tho' the ocean rolls between us. 

Distance cannot hearts divide; 
Still, in spirit, ye are with me, 

By the Forth, the Tweed, and Clyde. 

" Tho' amid Canadian forests, 

Or on Ganges' banks ye be. 
Or in AMc's wilds, ye ever 

Turn with longing hearts to me ; 
Tho' in distant lands ye triumph. 

Still for Scotia's hills ye pine — 
Ever thinking of our ingles, 

And the Hallowe'ens langsyne. 

" And the quiet of our Sabbaths, 

And our psalm-tunes' solemn tones, 
And our altars, old and hoary, 

'Mid the grey memorial stones. 
Weel I ken my early lessons 

Deep in a' your hearts are set ; 
Ah, the Bible and the ballads 

No, ye never can forget ! 






HALLOWE'EN. 



175 



" Ne'er be Fenian fules amang ye, 

Stick to country, kirk, and Queen ; 
And wherever ye may wander, 

Aye keep up auld Hallowe'en." 
Even while she spoke, the grey cock 

Clapt aloud his wings and crew. 
And or e'er I wist, the pageant 

Past awa' like morning dew. 



V\.VVv \.>.v/V*\^>.' \.^A, ' 



176 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 




CARTHA AGAIN. 

>H, why did I leave thee ! Oh, why did I paxt 
j^^i^ Frae thee, lovely Cartha, thou stream of my heart ? 
Oh, why did I leave thee, and wander awa* 
Frae the hame o* my childhood, GlenifFer an' a' ? 
The thocht o' thee aye mak's my bosom overflow 
Wi' a' langing that nane save the weary can know ; 
And a' Fortunes favours are empty and vain, 
If I'm ne'er to return to thee, Cartha again. 

When I hear the soft tone o' my ain Lowlan' tongue, 
Ance mair Fm a laddie the gowans among ; 
I see thee still winding the green valley through, 
And the Highland hills towering afar in the blue ; 
But the Untie, the laverock, the blackbird an' a', 
Are a' singing — " Laddie ye've lang been awa'." 
Nae wonder I sit doun an' mak' my sad mane — 
" Am I ne'er to behold thee, sweet Cartha, again ?" 

When I hear the sweet lilt o' some auld Scottish sang, 
how my bluid leaps as it gallops alang ! 
The thumps o' my heart gar my bosom a' stoun, 
My held it grows dizzie, an' rins roTin' an' roun'. 
My very heartstrings tug as if they would crack, 
And burst a' the bonds that are keepin' me back ; 
But then comes the thocht — here I'm doom'd to remain, 
And ne'er to return to thee, Cartha, again ! 

In a grave o' the forest, when life's journey's past, 
Unknown and unhonoured, they'll lay me at last; 
Aboon me nae blue-bell nor gowan shall wave. 
Nor nae robin come to sing ower my grave. 
But surely ! ah surely ! the love o' this heart 
For thee, lovely Cartha, can never depaii ; 
But free frae a' sorrow, a' sadness and pain, 
My spirit shall haunt thee, dear Cartha, again. 



SCOTLAND REVISITED. 



177 



SCOTLAND REVISITED; OR, THE WANDERER'S 

RETURN. 




HEN mony a year had come and gane, 
^ And I'd grown auld and hoary, 
And mony a hope had proven vain, 

And mony a dream o' glory ; 
Then backward to my childhood's haipe 

A weary langing sent me, 
T found my native vale the same, 
But very few that kent me. 

There were the hills my childhood saw, 

They look'd as if they kent me ; 
And well they might ! — when far awa' 

Oh how they did pursue me ! 
And there amang the broomy braes 

I often paus'd and ponder'd 
Upon the joys o* ither days. 

Then on again I wander'd. 

At length our cot aj^pear'd in view, 

O weel I kent the biggin. 
There was the same o'erhanging yew. 

And thack upon the riggin' ; 
And there the winnock in the en' 

Wi' woodbine trained sae trimly, 
And up aboon the cosie den 

Reek swirlin' frae the chimly. 

how my heart leapt at the sicht, 
Till I could hardly bear it ; 

1 felt as if I would gang gyte, 

For I was maist deleerit. 



178 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



And hurrying to the sacred spot, 
Ilk thump cam* quick and quicker, 

I tried to pray, but in my throat 
The words grew thick and thicker. 

To hide my tears I vainly strove, 

For nae ane cam' tae meet me, 
Nae Mither wi' her look o' love, ' 

Nae sister cam* tae greet me : 
For gane were they, baith ane an' a', 

The dear hearts that I cherished, 
Gane, like the flowers o' spring awa , 

Or like a vision perished. 



This was the spot of aU most dear. 

Where all my dreams were centr d : 
And yet wi' trembling and wi' fear, 

Beneath that roof I enter'd. 
There was the place my father sat. 

Beside my mother spinning. 
An' a' the bairns, wi' merry chat, 

In joy around her rinning. 

There, in the cottage of my birth. 

The same rooftree above me, 
I stood a wanderer on the earth. 

With nae ane left to love me. 
Oh ! I had often stood alone 

On many a post of danger, 
And never wept till standing on 

My native hearth — a strangei*. 

I sought the auld kirkyard alane. 
Where a' the lov'd are sleeping. 

And only the memorial stane 
Its watch aboon them keeping ; 



SCOTLAND REVISITED, 



179 



It only said, that they were dead — 
Once here, but now departed ; 

A' gane I a' gane ! to their lang hame. 
The true, the gentle hearted. 

life, I cried, is all a woe; 

A journey lang and dreary ; 
Is there na hame to which we go, 
Nae heart-hame for the weary ? 

1 cleared the weeds frae off tha stane. 

And lang I sat and ponder'd 
Upon the days for ever gane. 
Then weary on I wander d. 



t \.~-j>y\^\. \f\.' \. - 



180 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES, 




PAISLEY ABBEY. 



LL hail, ye ruins hoary ! 
Still stately in decay, 
Reared were your aisles and sacred pales, 

By the mighty in their day. 
We boast of our achievements, 
And smile at the ages mirk, 
Nor seem to ken, they were mighty men 
Wha built this " Haly Kirk." 

* 

And here the mitred Abbots, 

In this their abbey gi*ay. 
For ages reigned, till th' glory waned, 

And the sceptre passed away ; 
But still their spirits linger, 

And love to hover round, 
'Mid all the change, that seems so strange. 

On their consecrated ground. 

And th' bell is tolled by spectres. 

At the hour o' midnicht deep ; 
And deid-lichts seen the chinks between, 

Where the monks are all asleep. 
And just as the moon is waning. 

And the woefu' east-wind raves, 
The Abbots all, when they hear the call, 

Start up frae their lowly graves. 

And ^tand round their ruined altar. 
In their robes of white array, 

For the souls unblest, that canna rest. 
To kneel, to weep and pray ; 



4 



PAISLEY ABBEY, 



181 



And still, as she hears the summons 

Amid the Gothic gloom, 
The good old Queen, with her regal mien* 

Comes forth her altar tomb : 

To plead for the hapless friar 

Condemned through countless years 
To weep and -wail iii the " Sounding Aisle," 

And echo all he hears. 
Then comes a kingly shadow,t 

The founder of this place, 
And there he stands, with uplifted hands, 

And' pleads for his hapless race. 

And he looks to good St Mirin,J 

But the saint can only say, 
" They never shall reign in the land again, 

They have passed like smoke away." 
Then slowly there arises 

A dim and shadowy train 
Of souls that still, have a taint of ill, 

And the mark of an earthly stain. 

And there are chiefs and barons, 

Each head of an ancient line, 
With sword and dirk, as they did their work, 

In the bluidy days lang syne. 
And there two wrathful spirits,! 

Like dark clouds hover near, 
Montgomery stem, and proud Glencairn, 

Who kept the land in fear : 



* M ar jory Bruco, daughter of the hero of Bannockbum. ' 

t Paisley Abbey was founded by V^t^ter, High Steward of Scotland, the original pro- 
genitor of the royal Stuarts. 

X The patron saint of Paisley. ^ 

§ The feuds of the Montgomeries and Ounnlu^hamB (See Semple's History of the 
Lairds of Glen). 



182 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



With their Maxwells and Skelmorlies, 

Who did each other kill, 
After a life of feud and strife, 

They look defiance still ; - 
Or, they avoid each other. 

With a mutual hate and dread, 
Or meet and pass, as in a glass. 

But not a word is said. 

And there the great Lprd Sempill, 

With the bard of old Beltrees :* 
And ranter Rab, and piper Hab, 

Wi* the buckles at their knees. 
And the twa auld droothie cronies, 

They canna yet forget 
The sang and tale — ^to the beef and $le 

They look wi' a lang regret. 

And there the youthful gallants, 

The lords and ladies gay. 
That still must moan in their confines lone. 

Till their ains are washed away ; 
And there they stand, a rueful band, . 

Yet they scarcely seem to know 
How the licht o' love, sent frae God above, 

Should hae been their deadly foe. 

And they wha destroyed the Abbeys, 

And heap'd the priests wi' scorn; 
Ah, they've had time to rue their crime, 

Where they ne'er see licht o' morn. 
And there comes Jenny Geddes, 

And sits in her lang deid sark. 
On her buffet stool, the puir auld fool ! 

To sigh o'er that Sabbath's wark. 



* Robert Semple of BeUtrees, author of the celebrated song of Maggn^e Lauder and the 
elegy on Babbie Simpson, piper of Kilbarachan. 



PAISLEY ABBEY, 



183 



For a' wha grace resisted, 

A waefu' weird maun dree ; 
And they come to plead that the church may speed 

The hour that will set them fi'ee. 
While a' the wee bairns unchristen*d 

Come up to the font to greet, 
Till the cock does craw, when they, ane and a', 

Pass aff on their noiseless feet 



-» -^ '%-> V 'V.X^\<'-^'v.> 



184 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



LORD LINDSAY'S RETURN. 




WEEL I mind that happy morn ! 
When I blew the hunter's bugle-horn, 
And the sound through the leafy lane was borne. 

And the joyous brothers, fair and tall, 
Came* bounding forth from the castle hall, 
With their ringing welcome, one and all. 

And a sister came with her fairy feet, 
The happy sprite of that green retreat. 
Oh why ! oh why ! did we ever meet ? 

We rang'd the deUs.and the forest free, 
And O, what a joyous band were we, 
Happy as only young hearts can be ! 

No sorrow came to those bowers so green. 

For we had no time to think, I ween, 

On the what might be, or the what had been. 

But I left them all for a distant land. 

Where the lakes and woods were wild and grand. 

But my heart still tum'd to that joyous band. 

Aweary of fortune's fickle gleams, 

I sat me down by the stranger s streams, 

And waver'd away to the land of dreams. 

Again we ranged through the forest free. 
And sang our songs 'neath the greenwood tree, 
Happy as only young hearts can be I 



LORD LINDSATS RETURN, 



185 



When many a year had roll'd away, 

And mine auburn locks were tinged with gray, 

I homeward came on a joyous day. 

And on to the hall I hurried fast, 

And the green lanes knew me as I past, 

And the old hills said ''thou art come at last." 

Again, as on the happy mom 

I blew the hunter's bugle-horn, . 

And the sound through the leafy lane was borne. 

With hope, and fear, my heart did bound 
But no one came at the welcome sound. 
And echo only answered round. 

And I rush'd into the castle hall, 

But I found for the true hearts, one and all, 

But pictures hangiog on the wall 

For the joyous ones were dead and gone, 

And their names inscribed on a mould'ring stone, 

In the village churchyard, old and lone. 

And the forester was old and gray. 

And he said, " that like the flowers of May," 

He saw them one by one decay. 

And I sought once more the greenwood tree. 
And I sat me down, and sighed " ah me !" 
Sorry, as only old hearts can be ! 



M 



186 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 




SCOTLAND. 



CALEDONIA ! can it be 
A wonder that we love thee ? 
And tho' we be afar from thee, 
We place no land above thee. 
For tho' in foreign lands we dwell, 

A sacred tie has bound us ; 
Our hearts can never lose the spell 
Thy mountains threw around us ! 

And tho' thy breath is cold and keen, 

And rugged are thy features ; 
Yet, O, my country ! thou hast been 

The nurse of noble natures. 
Who left us an inheritance — 

A world of song and story ; 
A wealth of sturdy common sense, 

And doughty deeds of glory. 

But, Scotland ! 'tis thy sense of worth 

And moral obligations, 
Which makes thee mighty on the earth, 

A ruler 'mong the nations. 
Does not thine humblest peasant know 

The truth of truths supernal — 
That Bank is but a passing show. 

But Moral Worth's eternal ? 

Scotland ! the humblest son of thine 

Is heir to living pages — 
Heir to a literature divine. 

Bequeathed to all the ages : 



I t- 



SCOTLAND. 



187 



r *■ 



Heir to a language void of art, 
And rich with human feeling; 

Heir to the language of the heart, 
Its sweetest tones revealing : 



Heir to those songs and ballads old, 

Brimful of love and pity, 
Which fall like showers of living gold. 

In many a hamely ditty. 
0, sing us sangs o' ither days ! 

0' ruins atUd and hoary ; 
0, siiig o' langsyne's broomy braes, 
^ And Freedom's fields o' glory ! 

0, we may leave our mountains high, 

Our grand old hills of heather; 
Yet song's the tie — ^the sacred tie — 

Which binds our hearts together. 
Then here's to a' wha fecht the wrang, 

And may their hopes ne'er wither — 
To Scotland, Freedom, Love and Sang ! 

For they aye gang together. 



188 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



THE SEMPILL LORDS.* 




»H, let me sit, at the midnight hour, 

Where the S6mpill lords are sleeping ; 
While the moonbeams shower 
Through the ruined totv^er, 
And the stars their watch are keeping. 

While the wand'ring wind, like a weary thing, 
Through the long rank grass is wailing ; 

And the shadows lone. 

Of the warriors gone. 
On the misty moonbeams sailing. 

Ah, ruin sits in those lordly halls ! f 
Where mirth and joy abounded ; 

Where warriors dwelt, 

And captives knelt. 
And the harp to glory sounded. 

Proud Elioston's a ruin gray ! % 
And none to tell her story. 

Save the winds qf eve. 

That come to grieve 
O'er the wreck of her ancient glory. 

And where are the minstrels, old and gray. 
Who sang to beauty's daughters 1 
They have past away 



* Hie estate of Castle SempiU, lies in the pariah of Lochwinnoch, and, when seen from 
the heights around, is one of the most heaatifnl and pictm^sque soenes in Scotland. It 
was acquired by Colonel Wllliaqa M*Dowall, in 1727 ; he demolished Casileton, one of 
the andent castles of the Sempills, and built a modem residaice on the site. 

t The Peil, once a fortress of great strength ; it was built by Lord Sempill, in the year 
1500, and is now a complete ruin. 

X Elloston Castle, the most ancient residence of the SempiUs, built in the year 1280, 
its massive walls, and arched fastnesses, are rapidly falling to decay. 



THE SEMPILL LORDS, 



189 



Like the list'ners gay, 
Or, like music on the waters. 

And the jocund bard, of the old Belltrees,|| 
In his moss-grown grave is lying ; 
And the songs he sung, 
That through Scotland rung, 
On the echo faintly dying. 

And lowly lies that warrior lord,§ 
Who oft so gaily bounded, 

On his dapple grey. 

In his war array, 
While the trump to battle sounded. 

there's no one left of that lordly race 
That climbed the steep of glory ; 

And their might's but a tale, 

Of a gitinddame frail, 
And a ruin old and hoary. 



H Robert Sempill, of Belltrees, who wrote the well-known song of Magsrie Lauder, the 
elegy on Habbie Simaon, piper of Kilbal«chan, and other poema. 

§ Lord Sempill was along with Regent Moray, at the battle of Laugside; for hiB valour, 
achievemente and counsel, he obtained the name of the great Lord Sempill. 



190 MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 




MARY WHITE. 

'YE mind o' the lang simmer days, Maay White, 

When we^gaed to the auld Patrick braes, Mary White ? 

When I pu*d the wild gowans, 

And wi' a* delight, 
I hung them in strings roun' 

Thy neck, Mary White ? 

D'ye mind o' the sang ye wad raise, Mary White ? 
The sang o' sweet " Ballenden braes," Mary White ? 
It couldna be love, but 
A nameless delight, 
Which thrill'd thro' my bosom. 
My dear Mary White. 

O, that was a sweet happy time, Mary White ! 
I've ne'er had sic moments since syne, Mary White ; 
When we look'd at ilk ither. 

And ]aughed wi' delight. 
And hardly kent what for. 
My dear Mary White. 

We were young, we were happy, indeed, Mary White, 
Noo care's strewn grey hair on my head, Mary White. 
My hopes hae a' wither'd, 

Wi' sorrowfu' blight; 
But still ye are green in my 
Heart, Mary White. 

And, oh ! do ye e'er think on me, Mary White ? 
Oh ! then does the tear blin' your e'e, Mary White ? 
Or hae ye lang wak'd frae 

That spell o' delight. 
And left me stiJl dreaming. 
My dear Mary White ? 



MARY WHITE. 



191 



'Tis often I think upon thee, Mary White ; 
For still thou art dear unto me, Mary White. 
For a' that this heart has 

E'er kent o' delight, 
Was nocht to the moments 
Wr thee, Mary White. 

Do ye 'mang the Uving still bide, Mary White ? 
Or hae ye cross'd ower the dark tide, Mary White t 
Oh, how this auld heart wad 

Yet loup wi' delight, 
Could T again see you, 
My dear Mary White. 



'.r\j\.'\rj\.'\r^ 



192 MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 




I WINNA GAE HAME 

WINNA gae back to my youthfii* haunts, 
For they are nae langer fair — 
The spoiler has been in the glades so green, 

And sad are the changes there : 
The plou' has been to the very brink, 

O' the lovely Locher fa*, 
And beauty has fled wi' the auld yew trees, 
And the bonnie wee birds awa. 

Young Spring aye cam' the earliest there, 

Alang wi* her dear cuckoo, 
And the weary Autunm lingered lang 

Wi* her lonely cusha-doo ; 
And peace aye nestled in ilka nook, 

O' the bonnie gowany glen. 
For it's always Sabbath among the flowers, 

Awa' frae the haunts o' men. 

How aft hae I paused in thae green retreats, 

O' the hare and the foggy-bee, 
While the lintie lilted to his love — 

As blithe as a bird could be ; 
And the yorlin sang on the whinny knowe. 

In the cheery mom o' spring, 
/Ind the laverock drapt frae the cloud at e'en. 

To fauld up her weary wing. 

And the mavis sang in the thorny brake. 

And the blackbird on the tree. 
And the lintwhite told his tale of love. 

Far down in the gowany lee ; 



/ WINNA GAE EAME. 



193 



And the moss, and the cress, and the crawflow'r crept, 

Sae close to the crystal spring, 
And the water cam wi* a laughin' loup, 

And awa' like a living thing. 

And it sang its way through the green retreats, 

In a voice so sweet and clear. 
That the rowan listened on the rock, 

And the hazel leaned to hear ; 
And the water lilies raised their heads, 

And the beUs in clusters blue, 
And the primrose came wi* its modest face, 

A' wat wi' the balmy dew. 

And the hoary hawthorn hung its head — 

As lapt in a blissfu' dream, 
While the honeysuckle strained to catch 

The murmurs o* that stream ; 
And the buttercup and the cowslip pale. 

To the green green margin drew, 
And the gowan cam' and brought wi* her 

The bonnie wee violet blue. 



And the red red rose and the eglantine. 

And the stately foxglove came, 
And mony an' mony a sweet wee flower, 

That has died without a name ; 
While the bumie brattled down the brae, 

In her ain blithe merry din. 
And lept the rocks in a cloud o' spray. 

And roared in the boiling Unn. 

And churned hersel' into silver white, 

Into bubbles green and gay. 
And rumbled round in her wild delight, 

'Neath the rainbow's lovely ray ; 



194 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



And swirled, and sank, and rose to the brim, 

Like the snawdrifb on the lee, 
And then in bells o' the rainbow's rim, 

She sang awa' to the sea. 

But the trees are felled and the birds are gane, 
* And the banks are lone and bare. 
And wearily now she drags her lane 

With the heavy sough o* care ; 
And fond lovers there shall meet nae mair, 

In the lang lang simmer's e'en. 
To pledge their vows 'neath the spreading boughs, 

Of the birk and the beech sae green. 

In a' my wanderings far or near. 

Through thae woods sae wild and lane, 
There was still ae spot to memory dear. 

That I hoped to see again ; 
But m no gae back. Til no gae back. 

For my heart is sick and sair. 
And I couldna' bide to see the wreck 

O' a place sae sweet and fair. 



•J w"v%/\/w>/\,'\/v 1 



THE WEE LADDIES SUMMER DAY. 



195 



THE WEE LADDIE'S SUMMER DAY. 




T the call of the blithe cuckoo 
In the leafy lanes o' June, 
Wee barefooted laddies I trow 

We scampert awa' frae the toun, 
To speel up the Hie-Craig rock, 
The haunt o' the hinny bee ; 
like a troop o' wee fairy folk, 
Wi' our happy hearts gaed we. 

And never was king upon his throne. 

So free frae every care, 
For the licht o' our hearts on nature shone, 

Making sunshine everywhere. 
We ranged the dells and the forest free — 

To our joy the valleys rang — 
Or sat us down on the gowany lee, 

To drink in the wild birds' sang. 

We kent the place whaur the blue-whaups bide, 

An' the howff o' the hoodie craw ; 
And the holes where the wee moss-cheepers hide. 

We kent them ane an' a'. 
And O, a mair joyous band than we 

Was never aneath the sun I 
While we howket for the hinnie bee, 

In his byke aneath the grun. 

O then, what a feast o' the hinny blabs ! 

As wee laddies only ken ; 
Sic nectar never cross'd the gabs 

O' the very greatest men. 



196 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



We cared na' for sic sma' affairs, 
As their kingdoms and their croons ; 

Or the busy world wi' a' its cares, 
An' its weary ups an' douns. 

We kent that our joy wad never fade, 

That the world was made for play, 
An' 'twas nonsense a' what the auld folks said, 

Of the sorrows on our way. 
Sae we rumple-tumpl'd doun the brae 

Wi* our hearts sae fu' o' glee. 
Or swung the lee-lang simmer's day. 

On the auld witch hazel tree. 

Or followed the bum wi* its twists an' crooks. 

As it jink'd roun the spunky knowe. 
Or sat us doun in the fairy nooks, 

Whaur a' the wee violets grou. 
And O, what a joy was the wild rose tree — 

Awa' in thae lonely glens, — 
And the glint o' the gowan's e'e. 

Which the laddie only kens. 



Our hearts had the glow o' the violet rare. 

And the freshness o' the dew ! 
And the lilt o' the sang that filled the air, 

Frae the speck in the bonnie blue. 
And nothing cam' our joy to mar, 

'Till the sun sank in the west, 
And the laverock drapt frae the e'ening star, 

And the cusha socht her nest. 

And gloamin' doun upon bank and scaur. 

In her mantle grey wad lie, — 
And the great old Highland hills afar, 

Were leaning against the sky. 



THE WEE LADDIE'S SUMMER DAY. 



197 



And the Craik cam' out frae amang the braes 

Awa' by the Peeseweep Inn ; 
And hame we gaed 'neath the gleaming rays, 

0' the red red rising mune. 



Ah, happy hearts! we can meet nae mair, 

There's been changes sad since then ; 
If in life ye be, ye're changed like me^ 

Into auld world weary men. 
But the hived up memory o' thae days, 

Your heartsr they can never tine, 
And aft wi' me 'mang the braes ye'U be. 

And the happy days langsyne. 



198 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



THE DEATH OF EVAN DHU. 




HET place the Chieftain in his chair, 
Beneath the aged yew ; 
And is this aU that now remains 
Of the mighty Evan Dhu ? 



The plaided clansmen gather round, 

And gaze upon his face, 
They fear that Death will soon lay low 

The hero of their race. 

Vainly they tend and talk to him, 
In friendship's soothing tone ; 

The old man sits with drooping head, 
Unconscious as a stone. 

" Go, bring the minstrel of our tribe, 
To sing the mountain strain — 
The strain he loved, tVill bring him back 
To consciousness again." 

And leaning on his staff, at length 

The aged bard appears. 
And gazing on him, thus he sings — 

But scarce can sing for tears : 



" A cloud hangs o'er Lochabar's wilds. 
Her vales are filled with woe. 
The shaft has started from the string. 
To lay her hero low. 



THE DEATH OF EVAN DHU. 



199 



"Behold the mountain warrior, 
The chief of sounding fame, 
Whose claymore in the battle flashed 
Like a consuming flame ! 

" But where, ah, where's the princely air. 
And the step so firm and true — 
The eagle eye, and the lordly brow 
Of the mighty Evan Dhu 1 

" Are these the very hands which laid 
The Sassenach Oiant low, 
Who dared invade Lochabar's wilds. 
Full fifty years ago 1" 

But he heeds him not, he hears him not, 
And the weeping clansmen seem 

Like fleeting shadows hov'ring round. 
Or phantoms in a dream. 

Anon he sings the mournful song, 

Some exiled heart of yore 
Sang, when he thought that he would see 

Lochabar*s hills no more. 

But he heeds him not, he hears him not, 
And the weeping clansmen seem 

Like fleeting shadows hov'ring round, 
Or phantoms in a dream. 



Anon he wakes — the battle cry — 
The Cameron's gathering strain, 

And the light of battle flashes in 
The old man's eye again. 



200 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



He clutches by his side, as if 
To draw his ancient brandy 
And starting from his couch^ alofb 
He waves his withered hand. 

And shouts, " Advance, Sons of Lochiel !" 

s 

* With all the fire of yore, 
And seems, as waving in his hand. 
The terrible claymore ! 



Great Chieftain of the Mountain race ! 

It was thy last adieu : 
And Clansmen clasp the lifeless form, 
Of the mighty Evan Dhu. 



LOVE. 



201 




LOVE. 



ETE muckle to vex us puir sons of a day, 
As we journey alang on life*s wearisome way ; 
But what are the troubles with which we're oppressed, 
If love makes our bosoms the hame o' her rest. 

When love lichts the hearthstane, there's joy in the ha', 
And a streak o* sunshine on ilk bosom doth fa' ; 
The ingle blinks blither, affections increase, 
And the cottage she turns to a palace o' peace. 

Where'er she approaches, a' hearts grow sincere, 

She hallows a' places, makes every spot dear; 

For wrang canna breathe in the sphere o' her grace. 

And hate flees awa' frae the licht o' her face. 

* 

Where'er she approaches, where'er she appears, 
She comes aye to comfort, and wipe awa' tears, 
To help on the weary, and lichten their load. 
And cheer them wi' sangs on their wearisome road. 

And O, her sweet smile makes the fallen look up. 
It's the ae blessed drap in their sorrowfu' cup ! 
Then O may this heart o' mine never grow sere ; 
0, let me, 'boon a' things, hold somebody dear ! 

0, leave me but love — ^tho' my rooftree should fa', 
And the gear we hae gather'd take wings an' 'wa' ; 
For riches and grandeur, the things we hold dear. 
Are a' but vain glories, that die wi* us here ; 
But love burns the brighter wi' our parting breath. 
And lichts us, at last, through the valley of death. 



N 



202 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES 




THE LANG HEIDED LADDIE. 

E'S a lang heided laddie that Sannock o' mine, 
And sometime or ither that laddie maun shine ; 
It needs nae auld spae-wife his fortune to ken, 
He*Il be seen and heard-tell o' amang muckle men. 
But bairns are no' noticed by big folks ye see, 
That belang to a puir widow-woman like me — 
But he'll gar tbem notice ere many years go, 
And listen to him, be they willing or no ; 
And to his decision, he'll make them a' boo — 
He's a lang heided laddie, our Sannock, I trou ! 

Alane, by the bumsides, he ranges for hours, 
And he kens a' about the wee birds and the flowers. 
He's off, ere the cock craws, awa' to the braes, 
And he stays out amang them for hale simmer days. 
To talk wi' the peeseweep and lane cushy-doo — 
He's a wonderfu' laddie, our Sannock, I trou ! 

There's no' an auld castle that towers on the steep, 
Nor a field whaur our auld fechtin' forefathers sleep, 
Nor a bonnie wee burnie that wimples alang, 
In the licht o' its gladness, immortal in sang. 
There's no' an auld kirk, where the gray howlets cry 
To the dead congregations around them that lie ; 
There's no' an auld abbey that sits in the rain, 
In widowed weeds, sighmg o'er glory that's gane, 
But he kens mair about them than antiquars do — 
He's a lang heided laddie, our Sannock, I trou ! 

Auld Birsie, the bodie that lives by his craft, 
Ance hinted to me, that my laddie was daft ; 
I bang'd up and tauld him, that " him nor his weans 
Wadna likely gang daft by the wecht o' their brains. 
Or their honesty either." I gied him my min'. 



THE LANG HEIDED LADDIE, 



203 



And the body can hardly look at me since syne; 
The spite o* the creature was easy seen through — 
He's a lang heided laddie, our Sannock, I trou ! 

It s lang been my notion, and proud wad I be, 
My wee friendlosa laddie, a preiu^her to see. 
rd shear for the siller, Pd do any work, 
To see my wee laddie, a licht in the kirk ! 
But he lauchs in my face when he sees me sae fain, 
And ha says, that hell preach in a way o' his ain. 
There are preachers, he says, "ne'er ordain'd by the kirk, 
That do a far greater, a far better work." 
I whUes think his doctrines are reaUy no' soun', 
But he lays them so like our auld minister doun ; 
It's a perfect delight just to hear him gang through- 
He's a lang heided laddie, our Sannock, I trou ! 

He'll talk o' ane Plato, a great man nae doubt, 

And heathens, that folks here ken naething about ; 

When but a wee totem, he'd sit by himsel', 

And spier at me questions 'bout heaven and hell. 

And to him, it was a great puzzle, he said. 

To ken hoo this yearth out o' naething was made — 

How three could be ane, and how ane could be three. 

Was a thing, he insisted, that never could be. 

Or why we should suffer for auld Adam's fa'. 

Or, why that God e'er made a deevil ava' ; 

I was fairly dumfoundered, and puzzled to learn 

How sic thochts could get into the held o' a bairn. 

But I hae nae a doubt, they cam' into his heid 

Like the mumps, or the measles, or grew like a weed 

That's soon rooted out by the gardner o' grace. 

And flowers a' the fairer, spring up in their place. 

I cherish the hope that I'll yet live to see 

Him waggin' his pow in a pulpit sae hie ; 

Nae doubt he's appointed some great work to do — 

He's a lang heided laddie, our Sannock, I trou ! ' 



204 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES 



HUGH MACDONALD * 




LOVE to look upon thy face, 
And doat on every feature; 
Thou humble, unassuming soul ! 
Thou simple child of nature ! 
Thou lover of all lovely things, 
With thee *tis always May ; 
For love has kept thy spirit young, 
Although thy locks are grey. 

Thou wert not made for cities vast, 

Nor for the strife of gain ; 
And it was joy to steal away 

To nature's green domain ; 
To hie thee to the harebell haunts, 

And to the glades of green. 
Where wild wood roses hang their heads. 

And hoary hawthorns lean. 

To hear the cuckoo's joyous shout 

Come welcome o'er the lee ; 
And 'mong tte purple heather blooms 

The bugle o' the bee. 
To hide thee in the hazel howes 

Of some lone cushat glen ; 
Or scale the Alpine summits hoar, 

Of some old Highland Ben. 

We love you for the love you bore 

The flow'rets of the wild ; 
You loved them with the artless love — 

The rapture of a child ! 



* Author of " Rambles Round Olasfcow," " Days at the Coast/' jcc., &C. 



HUGH MACDONALD. 



205 



You. loved them as the lover loves, 
And from no sense of duty ; 

You loved them as the poet loves, 
And only for their beauty ! 

Thy " flowering fern " shall never die, 

Thy gowan*s aye in bloom, 
The lark is always in thy sky, 

The linnet in thy broom \ 
For poesy hath touched thy heart 

As with a living coal ; 
And nature's voices evermore 

Keep singing through thy soul : 



The wail of winds among the rocks, 

The laughter of the rills, 
The silence of the dreary moors, 

The thunder of the hills ! 
Thy spirit was a cell wherein 

They lov'd to linger long. 
And baptiz'd in its living font 

They started into song ! 

The bridegroom on his bridal day, 

Doats not upon his bride 
With look of deeper love, than thou 

On our romantic Clyde. 
Her Highland and her Lowland haunts, 

Are dear unto thy breast ; 
But dearer far, than each, than all — 

My green glens of the West ! 

And led by thee, once more we see 
The green haunts of the gowan ; 

Again we dream, beside the stream, 
Beneath the haw and rowan. 



206 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



And lov'd ones that are now no more, 
From out their graves will start, 

And wander with me as of yore, 
Upon the banks of Cart. 

And how yon lov*d to linger round 

The ruins old and hoar ! 
Where mighty chiefs and warriors dwelt, 

And minstrels sang of yore : 
Old Crookston castle's mouldering walls. 

And Stanley's turrets gray ; 
And hoary Qamock, telling tales 

Of glory past away. 



And how you lov'd the ruin'd shrines, 

Where sits grey Melancholy, 
Still calling to the passer-by — 

" Pause ! for the place is holy !" 
Is not " Gray Paisley^s " Abbey hoar. 

An old world-weary moan, 
A solemn chant ! a holy hymn ! 

A prayer that's breathed in stone ! 

And with what joy you hung around 

Our fields renown'd in story ! 
And how your eye burn'd in the light 

Of Scotland's ancient glory ! 
And with unwearied feet you traced 

Her scenes renown'd in son^ ; 
The streams that gush, and leap, and rush 

In deathless strains along. 

And how you lov'd to treasure up 

The snatches of old rhymes. 
Quaint epitaphs and legends old, 

The tales of other times. 



HUGH MA CDONALD, 207 

And many a pilgrimage you made, 

Afl if yon fain would number 
The moss-grown — the forgotten graves, 

Where Scotia's martyrs slumber. 

Thy feet shall tread those haunts no more. 

And Spring with all her train, 
ShaU miss her pilgrim of the moor, 

The mountain, and the plain. 
Dear heart, farewell ! we cannot tell 

Where thou art laid to rest ; 
But, may the flowers you lov'd so well. 

Aye bloom upon thy breast ! 



208 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



SIGHS IN THE CITY. 




EARHjY my days are past ; 
For my heavy lot is cast 
In the crowded city vast. 

How my spirit longs to be 
From this dreary prison free — 
Oh, the laughing meads for me ! 

Oh ! to follow the. cuckoo, 

While the glades are drapt wi' dew, 

And the lark is in the blue ! 

Oh, to tread the flowery sod. 
Free from all this heavy load — 
One with Nature and with God ! 



Spring is forth with joyous air, 
Strewing gems so rich and rare, 
Showering gowans everywhere. 

I will go where'er she goes. 
Pausing often where she throws 
The vilet, and the red, red rose. 

And we'll seek the glades of green. 
Where the honeysuckles lean. 
And the bluwarts ope their een ; 

Where the auld witch hazels hing, 
And the woodbines creep and cling, 
Round about the lonely spring ; 



SIGHS IN THE CITY, 



209 



Where the birds are blithe aboon, 
And the laughing runnels rin 
Onward in their merry din, 

Treading paths the wild bee knows ; 
Where the grass the greenest grows, 
In the haunts of the primrose. 

Where the foxglove, fair and tall, 
Leans against the rocky wall, 
Listening to the waterfall ; 

Where the bonnie hawthorn hings, 
And the wee gray lintie sings 
Of unutterable things : 

And half hidden by the weeds, 
Bonnie bluebells hing their heads, 
Drapt wi' dew, like siller beads. 

And the lily, meek and mild. 
Blooming in the lonely wild, 
That I lov'd so when a child ! 

Little wildlings, pure and bright. 
Still, as to my childhood's sight, 
Ye're a rapture, a delight ! 

Far from those who buy and sell, 
I will seek the quiet dell — 
Lonely ones with you to dwell ! 

Where no wprldling soils the sod, 
m live in your green abode. 
One with Nature and with God. 



\ 



210 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



WHEN GEORGE THE FOURTH WAS KING. . 






The heart was light, the world was bright, 
When George the Fourth was King ! 

Then buttercups and fairy haps 

Cam' laughing in wi' May ; 
And mirly birds wi* downy caps 

Were singing a' the day. 

Then nature's bosom had a beat 
Which nothing could destroy ; 

The very grass beneath our feet 
Look'd up and laughed for joy. 

Oh, then the sun had ne'er a spot ! 

And all was green and gold ; 
And in our inmost hearts we thought 

We never would grow old. 

But oh, the flowers have lost their hue ! 

The birds they dinna sing 
Sae sweetly as they used to do, 

When George the Fourth was King ! 



Then mirth in ilka cottage rang, 
For they were plenished weel ; 

And rosy lasses laughing sang 
Beside the spinning wheel 



WHEN GEORGE THE FOURTH WAS KING. 211 

And buskit in their hame-spun gray ; 

But they were trig and braw, 
Tho' ne'er a crinoline had they, 

They stole the heart awa*. 

But fashion rules the world now, 

And oh, its heart is cold ! 
And love is no' the sacred lowe 

It was in days of old. 

Oh ! weary fa' this waefu' pride ! 

It's banished rock and reel ; 
And joy has fled the country side, 

With Scotland's spinning wheel. 

And weary fa' this waefu' lore 

Which only makes us vain ; 
The tree of knowledge as of yore, 

Ha* brought but grief and pain. 

How green the braes were in the days 

When life was in its spring ! 
The heart was light, the world was bright. 

When George the Fourth was king ! 



, '^A/\/^yvv^/\A/^/v/vxrvA#%.'v^.'^/^yv• 




THE AGE OF JOLLITY. 




HE age, ah me ! of jollity, 
Is numbered with the past ; 
For our new world, her lip has curFd, 
And we've all grown good at last. 

The joyous ways of our youthful days. 

No more in the land are known ; 
With the rock and reel, and the spinning wheel, 

They are gone, for ever gone ! 
And the Maypole gay, has passed away, 

And the dance upon the green — 
And the Hogmanay, and the New-Year*s-day, 

And the joyous Hallowe'en. 



Andy the legends old, which then were told. 

And the fairy tales of yore ; 
With the minstrel's lay, ah, well-a-day ! 

They are heard in the land no more. 
And the fairs of old, with their joys untold. 

Which the young heart doated on ; 
With the puppet shows, and the dancing jo's. 

They are gone, for ever gone. 

We've nae bairns noo, with the rose-red hue. 

That romp in the wood and glen ; 
But in their place we've got a, race, 

Not o' weans, but o' wee, wee men — 
Wha calculate, at nae sma' rate. 

And are always taking stock 
For saving cash, all else is trash 

To our wonderfu' wee folk. 



THE AGE OF JOLLITY. 



213 



And what have we got, our sires had not, 

In our intellectual march, 
Save vain conceit, and the way to cheat, 

With our stiflF'niDg and our starch ? 
Oh, give to me the spirit free. 

With the ringing laugh and roar ; 
And the simple heart, devoid of art, 

As it was in the days of yore. 



Lament with me, for jollity 
Is numbered with the past ; 

For our prim world, her lip has curl'd, 
And weVe all grown good at last. 



2U 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES, 



OLD ADAM. 




,LD ADAM was a character, 
Old Adam was a sage ; 
Ye'll hardly find his marrow now, 

In this degenerate age. 
He wore aboon his raven locks 
A braid kilmamock bonnet, 
A hameart coat upon his back, 
Wr big horn buttons on it. 

A plaid out-owre his shouthers hung. 

The en* fell owre his sleeve ; 
A crooket, knotet, hazel rung 

Was in his wally nieve. 
His breeks were side, sae were his shoon, 

His legs they were nae rashes, 
And button'd upward to the knee, 

Wi' great drab splatterdashes,! 

A ringin' laugh, a hearty shake, 

A bright eye beaming o'er you ; 
Ahint him Towser wags his tail. 

And there he stands before you ! 
And yet the inner man was form'd, 

On nature's model plan ; 
The dress but hid a heart that loy'd 

All Nature, God, and Man. 



He was nae thiTig that stood apart 

Frae universal nature ; 
But had a comer in his heart 

For ev'ry living creature. 



OLD ADAM. 



215 



And after him^ o'er a' the toon, 

The dogs delighted ran ; 
The very kitlins kent fu* well, 

He was nae common man. 

His heart was just a living spring, 

Wi* sympathy overflowing ; 
And round its brim, the sweetest flowers, 

Of Love, and Hope, were blowing. 
To see him — ^and to hear him speak — 

To look but in his face. 
It made you fa' in love somehow, 

Wi' a' the human race. 

A secret charm, a hidden spell, 

A mystery had bound him ; 
An atmosphere of calm delight, 

Was always hanging round him ; 
*Twas even in the dress he wore, 

For tho' his coat was cloutit. 
Ye never saw't, or if ye saw, 

Ye thocht nae mair about it. 

I ne'er could solve the mystery. 

By words that drappit frae him, 
I felt, but couldna' find the way, 

He carried conquest wi' him. 
And weel I lik'd to sit and read 

The language o' his e'e ; 
And try to sound the hidden deeps 

Of that untroubled sea. 



The maist o' folk wha would be guid, 

And keep frae doing evil, 
Maun aft hae battles wi' themselves. 

As weel as wi' the deevil. 



216 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



And some are guid by grace o' God, 
And some hae to be skelpit ; 

But he was guid, and just because 
He wasna fit to help it. 

His joy was in the woods to rove, 

To loiter by the bum ; 
He lov'd wild nature, and she lov'd 

Her lover in return. 
He sought her green retired nooks. 

And nae ane better knew 
The secret haunts, the fairy howes. 

Where a' the wild flowers grew. 

And he would follow in the track 

Where spring had newly been, 
To see the primrose peeping forth. 

And blewarts ope their e'en. 
The gowan didna better lo'e 

Nor did the foxglove ken. 
The hazel howes, the fairy knowes 

O* bonnie Calder glen. 

Ilk strange wee bird o' wood and wild, 

'Bout which the learn'd disputit, 
'Its name, its nature, and its sang, — 

Weel kent he a^ about it. 
And when the wee gray lintie cam* 

Around his cot to sing, 
He wadna let the vagrant touch 

A feather o* her wing. 

And oh ! how he would sing the sangs 

O' langsyne's happy days. 
Till we were wafted back again 

Amang the broomy braes. 




We felt the magic o' the wood, 

As we were wont to do, 
When we would hush our hearts to hear 

The voice o' the cuckoo. 

Ance mair, the flowers were living things 

That round about us sprung ; 
It wasna dew, but siller draps 

That on their bosoms hung ! 
The sky again was bonnie blue, 

Where no' a speck was seen ; 
And oh ! the grass was green again — 

I canna tell how green. 

We felt the breath o' meadows sweet, 

Ere yet the dews depart ; 
And ho ! ance mair the gowan fair. 

Had crept into our heart. 
And tho' he's lain him down to rest, 

Frae a' earth's good or ill ; 
His memory is fragrant yet — 

He's singing to us still. 



-v'".' V' vr\/-N/ V v'VN.' kTK.' V v">^\/W'\.'\.'V^ 



218 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES 



THE HALLS OF HOLYROOD. 




LET me sit as evening falls 
Li sad and solemn mood, 
Among the now deserted halls 

Of ancient Holyrood ; 
And think how human power and pride 

Must sink into decay, 
Or like the bubbles on the tide, 

^ Pass, pass away. 



No more the joyous crowd resorts 

To see the archers good, 
Draw bow within the ringing courts 

Of merry Holyrood ; ' 
Ah, where's that high and haughty race 

That here so long held sway, 
And where the phantoms they would chase t 
Passed, passed away ! 



And where the Monks and Friars gray, 

That oft in jovial mood, 
Would revel till the break of day 

Li merry Holyrood ? 
The flagons deep are emptied out, 

The revellers all away ; 
They come not to renew the bout — 
Where, where are they ? 



THE HALLS OF HOLYROOB, 



219 



And where the plaided chieftaJns bold 
That round their monarch stood ! 

And where the damsels that of old 
Made merry Holyrood ? 

And where that fair, ill-fat«d Queen^ 
And where the minstrels gray, 

That made those vaulted arches ring — 
Where, where are* they \ 



Though mouldering are the minstrels* bones, 
Their thoughts have time withstood — 

They live in snatches of old songs 
Of ancient Holyrood, 

For thrones and dynasties depart, 
And diadems decay. 

But these old gushings of the heart, 

Pass not away. 



220 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES. 



WERE A' JOHN TAMSON'S BAIRNS. 




», COME and listen to my sang, 
Naa matter wha ye be, 
For there's a human sympathy 

That sings to you and me ; 
For as some kindly soul has said — 

All underneath the stams. 
Despite of country, clime, and creed, 
Are a* John Tamson*s bairns. 



The higher that we clim' the tree, 

Mair sweert are we to fa', 
And, spite o' fortune's heights and houghs, 

Death equal-aquals a' ; 
And a' the great and mighty anes 

Wha slumber 'neath the cairns. 
They ne'er forgot, though e'er so great, 

We're a' John Tamson's bairns. 

Earth's heroes spring frae high and low, 

There's beauty in ilk place, 
There's nae monopoly o' worth 

Amang the human race ; 
And genius ne'er was o' a class, 

But, like the moon and stams, 
She sheds her kindly smile alike 

On a' John Tamson's bairns. 



There's nae monopoly o' pride — 

For a' wi' Adam fell — 
I've seen a joskin sae transformed. 

He scarcely kent himsel'. 



WE'RE A' JOHN TAMSON'S BATRNS, 



221 



The langer that the wise man lives, 
The mair he sees and learns, 

And aye the deeper care he takes 
Owre a* John Tamson's bairns. 

There's some distinction, ne*er a doubt, 

Tween Jock and Master John, 
And yet its maistly in the dress, 

When everything is known ; 
Where'er ye meet him, rich or poor. 

The man o' sense and hams, 
By moral worth he measures a' 

Puir auld John Tamson's bairns. 



There's ne'er been country yet nor kin 

But has some weary flaw, 
And he's the likest God aboon 

Wha loves them ane and a' ; 
And after a' that's come and gane, 

What human*heart but yearns. 
To meet at last in licht and love, 

Wi' a* John Tamson's bairns. 



222 



MISCELLANEOUS SCOTTISH PIECES, 



LONGINGS IN LONDON. 




Y soul is sick of those miles of brick, 
I*m weary of "London Town \' 
I long to flee from this dismal s^a, 

And to Scotland hurry down. 
I'm weary of smoke, and pale faced folk, 

And I long to flee away ; 
I long to breathe on the mountain heath, 
As a school-boy longs for play. 



I'm sick of routine, I would change the scene, 

! give me the life that thrills ; 
Exchange dead books, for the living brooks, 

And the joy of the savage hills. 
1 set me free, and away I'll flee 

With the live things of t^e rocks, 
And be as of old, a hunter bold. 

In the land of herds and flocks. 

1 for the joy without alloy 

'Mong the MUs of Highland Dee, 
Where torrents roar, and the eagles soar. 

And the stag is bounding free. * 
! for the tent, on the heather bent, 

And the hardy Highland fare ; 
And the wild halloo of our jovial crew, 

In our short reUef from care. ' 



O ! for the flock at rest by the rock. 
Each stag with his lordly crown ; 

How still they lie, 'neath the bending sky. 
And the great hills looking down. 



LONGINGS IN LONDON. 



223 



! for the dash, at the rifle's flash, 
While the wounded roe-buck strains, 

And the bounding blood, like a roaring flood, 
Is sweeping through our veins. 



As we take the track, with the yelling pack, 

And the startled hills reply — 
Delirious joy ! all earth's a toy 

When the chase lights up the eye ! 
1 respite rare, from the city's care, 

And its artificial pains. 
With the pack to be on the mountains free, 

And the savage in our veins.